The present report is the sixty-third 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), paragraph 5 of resolution 2332 (2016), paragraph 6 of resolution 2393 (2017), paragraph 12 of resolution 2401 (2018) and paragraph 6 of resolution 2449 (2018), in the last of which the Council requested the Secretary-General to provide a report at least every 60 days, on the implementation of the resolutions by all parties to the conflict in the Syrian Arab Republic.
The information contained herein is based on data available to agencies of the United Nations system and obtained from the Government of the Syrian Arab Republic and other relevant sources. Data from agencies of the United Nations system on their humanitarian deliveries have been reported for August and September 2019.
II. Major developments
Key points: August and September 2019
Despite the ceasefires in Idlib announced by the Russian Federation and the Government of the Syrian Arab Republic, on 2 and 30 August respectively, civilian casualties, including confirmed deaths of civilians, continued to be reported over the reporting period. According to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), air strikes and other hostilities between 1 August and 22 September killed 209 civilians. Following the announcement of the ceasefire on 30 August, there was a notable decrease in the number of air strikes, although heavy exchanges of ground-based strikes continued to be reported. In total, since late April, OHCHR has reported that more than 1,000 civilians have been killed. In addition, there have been more than 400,000 people displaced and significant damage has bee n caused to civilian infrastructure.
Health-care and education services continued to be affected by hostilities during the reporting period, with 13 incidents affecting health-care facilities and assets confirmed by the World Health Organization, and 11 incidents affecting education facilities verified by the United Nations. The incidents, many in the north-west of the country, resulted in the killing and injuring of women, children, people in need of medical care and humanitarian workers.
Conditions inside Rukban, on the Syrian-Jordanian border, continue to be extremely challenging. According to findings from an inter-agency assessment mission in August, food insecurity has reached critical levels with most of the population reporting dependence on negative coping mechanisms to meet their needs. From 5 to 11 September, the United Nations and the Syrian Arab Red Crescent conducted a joint mission to Rukban to provide urgent assistance, including delivering a one-month food ration and nutrition supplies for up to 15,000 people. From 26 to 29 September, United Nations and Syrian Arab Red Crescent teams provided additional aid and also supported the voluntary departures of 329 people wishing to leave Rukban. Since late March, more than 18,000 people have left Rukban, however, thousands remain in the area and are in need of continued assistance until durable solutions are found for them.
In the north-east of the country, the Hawl camp in Hasakah Governorate now hosts 68,600 people, 94 per cent of whom are women and children. Humanitarian access to the annex hosting non-Syrian and non-Iraqi nationals for the sustained delivery of services continued to be limited. Tensions remain high in the camp, with security incidents reported on a weekly basis, including incidents grounded in ideology, with one serious incident occurring on 30 September, which resulted in the death of one female resident and seven other women being injured.
Humanitarian assistance provided by United Nations agencies included food for an average of 4.1 million people in need each month and more than 620,000 health and medical treatments to people throughout the country. Cross-border assistance, authorized under Security Council resolutions 2165 (2014), 2191 (2014), 2258 (2015), 2393 (2017) and 2449 (2018), remained a vital part of the humanitarian response. In August and September, 1,388 trucks (41 consignments) delivered gener al food assistance for over 1 million people (monthly average).
Response efforts from within the Syrian Arab Republic continued at scale in response to assessed needs throughout much of the country, even as access to some areas and for some humanitarian actors, including the United Nations, remained limited. During the reporting period, the United Nations and/or its partners deployed 1,119 missions throughout the country and also reached new areas, such as Palmyra, and some areas that recently shifted control in southern Idlib (Sinjar subdistrict), although not yet in a sustainable manner.
During the reporting period, a number of access constraints were reported in parts of Idlib, northern Hama and south-eastern Aleppo Governorates, owing mostly to heightened hostilities, although some response efforts are under way in those areas. Access was also limited in Raqqah city and east of the Euphrates River in Dayr al-Zawr, including the Hajin enclave, owing mostly to widespread explosive hazard contamination. Some areas in the south of the country were also not accessible in a sustainable manner to some humanitarian actors, including the United Nations, owing to administrative restrictions and in some locations, insecurity. The United Nations has not been able to gain access to the collective shelters in Homs for those leaving Rukban and conduct assessments and monitoring in the areas of second destination for people leaving Rukban, including areas in Homs and Rif Dimashq Governorates.