The UN humanitarian chief briefed the Security Council on the worsening situation for civilians in Syria and the United Nations' call for an immediate 30-day cease-fire to deliver aid and evacuate the critically ill—but the council took no action.
Russia's UN Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia told reporters a humanitarian cease-fire is "not realistic" because "the terrorists" are keeping up attacks though Moscow would like one.
Sweden and Kuwait called for Thursday's closed-door briefing to get an update from humanitarian chief Mark Lowcock on what Sweden's UN Ambassador Olof Skoog called the "dramatic" humanitarian situation which is "deteriorating in many, many areas."
Skoog said Sweden and Kuwait are "working on a follow-up" to a proposed council statement on the dire humanitarian situation that failed to get the unanimous council support required.
According to a council diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity because the consultations were closed, Lowcock said the humanitarian
situation was the worst since 2015, citing destruction in rebel-held Idlib from government attacks that have seen more than 300,000 civilians flee since mid-December.
Lowcock also cited the "horrific conditions" in the rebel-held Damascus suburb of Eastern Ghouta where more than 700 people need immediate evacuation and malnutrition is widespread, the diplomat said.