Access to Syrian women and children 'regressing'

One of the people who alerted the world to the genocide in Darfur is now warning about Syria.

The former UN humanitarian co-ordinator for the Sudan, Professor Mukesh Kapila, says the international community is completely paralysed and its ability to stop crises such as that in Syria has gone backwards in recent years. He now works at Manchester University

Speaking to the Today programme, Professor Kapila said: "Immediately after 9/11, the world was in a sober mood and the security council was more united and trying to work together.

"Today what we have is division and short-term narrow interests. That completely undermines the moral authority of any of the great powers who had originally been asked to solve these kinds of problems.

"The consequences are for the ordinary [Syrian] people. Some four million people are affected, well over a million of them are refugees. Internally humanitarian access to reach women and children is regressing every day."

First broadcast on the Today programme on Monday 15 April.