1. The present report is the fortieth submitted pursuant to paragraph 17 of Security Council resolution 2139 (2014), paragraph 10 of resolution 2165 (2014), paragraph 5 of resolution 2191 (2014), paragraph 5 of resolution 2258 (2015) and paragraph 5 of resolution 2332 (2016), in which the Council requested the Secretary-General to report, every 30 days, on the implementation of the resolutions by all parties to the conflict in the Syrian Arab Republic.
2. The information contained herein is based on the data available to United Nations agencies and from the Government of the Syrian Arab Republic, as well as from other Syrian and open sources. Data from United Nations agencies on their humanitarian deliveries have been reported for the period from 1 to 31 May 2017.
Key points in May 2017
(1) On 4 May, Iran (Islamic Republic of), the Russian Federation and Turkey signed a memorandum on the creation of four de-escalation areas, where hostilities between the conflicting parties are to cease (including the use of aerial assets). It aims to facilitate rapid, safe and unhindered humanitarian access and create conditions for the voluntary return of refugees and internally displaced persons.
(2) Only three inter-agency cross-line convoys were deployed in May. Of those, only one, a convoy to Duma on 2 May, deployed to a besieged area.
(3) Evacuations out of the Wa‘r district in Homs city were completed on 21 May. Since a local agreement between Government and non-State armed opposition groups to evacuate reached on 13 March, a total of 13 rounds of evacuation took place; around 20,000 persons left the district, with most going to Aleppo and Idlib.
(4) The Syrian Democratic Forces, supported by the international counter-ISIL coalition led by the United States of America, continued the advance towards Raqqah city amid heavy air strikes and increased ground fighting, reaching an area within five km of Raqqah city by 31 May.
(5) On 7 May, the United Nations resumed life-saving humanitarian assistance at the berm between the Syrian Arab Republic and Jordan with a second aid distribution cycle. Throughout the month of May, food and essential items have been delivered to approximately 27,600 individuals in the Rukban community in preparation for the summer months.