Elsewhere online
May 15, 2012

U.N. and Syria Squabble Over Control of Aid Deliveries

Syria and the United Nations are at odds over the distribution of relief supplies to a million people affected by the conflict in the Middle Eastern nation, with U.N. officials rebuffing Syria's demand that it manage the deliveries, says Reuters.

The government wants to put the Syrian Arab Red Crescent, the country's Red Cross equivalent, in charge of aid delivery, but a diplomat familiar with the talks said "that position is a nonstarter" for the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, which has been negotiating with Syrian officials for weeks on the issue.

The U.N. agency "can't allow the Syrian government to use it as a way to get people [they want to arrest] or to deliver aid only to government supporters," the envoy said.