1 August 2014
‘Flagrant’ violations of international law continue in Syria; all parties urged to uphold their obligations under humanitarian law
Valerie Amos, the UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and UN Emergency Relief Coordinator, warned that attacks on civilians by all parties to the conflict and human rights abuses continue ‘in flagrant violation of the most basic principles of … international law’.
Regarding the progress in implementing resolutions 2139 and 2165 on humanitarian access in Syria, Ms. Amos confirmed that the monitoring mechanism has been established and that on 24 July the first UN convoy crossed into Syria from Turkey through the Bab al-Salam border crossing. Resolution 2165 was unanimously adopted by the UNSC on 14 July, authorising the UN and its partners to use routes across four additional border crossings with Turkey, Jordan and Iraq, and authorising the establishment of a monitoring mechanism to confirm the humanitarian nature of supplies brought through those crossings points.
Ms. Amos emphasised that there are significant challenges to operating across those four border points, including ongoing fighting, existence of a multitude of armed groups, and terrorist groups, which have stated their objections to international aid and aid workers. ‘All parties to the conflict must uphold their obligations to protect civilians and comply with the principles of humanitarian law,’ she said.