A six-year-long United Nations operation delivering aid across the Syrian border to millions of civilians will expire at midnight on Friday if a deadlocked U.N. Security Council cannot reach a last-minute deal to extend its authorization.
Since 2014 the United Nations and aid groups have crossed into Syria from Turkey, Iraq and Jordan at four places annually authorized by the council.
Its approval is needed because the Syrian government did not consent to cross-border deliveries.
"To put it very simply, there is no alternative to reaching the people we need to reach in the northwest and northeast (of Syria) without the cross-border" operation, U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric told reporters on Thursday.
More than 3 million Syrian civilians are completely dependant on cross-border aid, the United Nations said.