HÀ NỘI — The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) met in New York on Wednesday to discuss the humanitarian situation in Syria, under the chair of Vietnam that holds the council’s presidency in January.
According to Mark Lowcock, UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, as from the beginning of December 2019, the humanitarian situation in northwest Syria has worsened due to escalating violence.
About 80 innocent civilians were killed, hundreds were injured and more than 350,000 have fled, mostly women and children. Many schools and hospitals were bombed and some major traffic routes were closed.
Relevant sides have not observed the cease-fire agreement signed on January 12, 2020, and hampered humanitarian aid, he said.
Meanwhile, in northeast Syria, 1.8 million people, including 150,000 refugees, are in need of humanitarian assistance.
Given this, humanitarian organisations are working hard to provide aid for local needy people, Lowcok stressed.
Most UNSC member countries have expressed concern over the humanitarian situation in northwest Syria and called on the parties to respect the cease-fire agreement inked in Idlib, fulfill the duty of protecting innocent civilians and civil establishments in line with international law, facilitate UN humanitarian activities and step up negotiation efforts to push ahead with the political process on the basis of the council’s Resolution 2254.
They also applauded the UN and relevant partners for their humanitarian assistance.
In his remarks, Ambassador Đặng Đình Quý, head of the Vietnamese permanent mission to the UN, also expressed his concern over the complex development of the humanitarian situation in Syria.
He suggested humanitarian aid focus on those who are in emergency situation, and called for support for the political progress, reconciliation and reconstruction in Syria, saying humanitarian activities should be carried out on the basis of respect for sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Syria.
Việt Nam hopes that the parties will hold dialogue and negotiations in a constructive manner in order to deal with conflicts peacefully, in accordance with international law, including the UNSC’s related resolutions, he said.
The meeting is one of the council’s three major monthly activities regarding Syria. Apart from the humanitarian issue, the council has looked into the political process and the use of chemical weapons in Syria. — VNS