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Syria 'bleeding inside and out', says UN chief

Press Trust of India  |  United Nations 

UN has expressed strong concern over continued violence and hostilities in Syria, saying the country is "bleeding inside and out", and called for full implementation of a UN resolution for a ceasefire in the nation where the conflict is entering its eighth year.

The UN said there has been no cessation of hostilities in

Though conflicts in some areas are diminishing in intensity, violence continues in Eastern Ghouta and beyond -- including in Afrin, parts of Idlib and in and its suburbs, he said.

"I am deeply saddened by the immense loss and cascading suffering of the Syrian people. And I am deeply disappointed by all those who have, year after year, by action or inaction, by design or indifference, allowed this to bleeding inside and out," the UN told the 15-member

He was briefing the Council yesterday on the implementation of resolution 2401 unanimously adopted last month.

Along with a 30-day ceasefire, the resolution calls for delivering aid, evacuating the sick and wounded, lifting sieges, accelerating humanitarian mine action, and protecting civilians and infrastructure.

According to UN data, the conflict has produced more than 5.6 million Syrian refugees and 6.1 million internally displaced people, with more than 13 million people inside the country requiring humanitarian assistance, including nearly six million children.

"Let me highlight just one stark fact on this grimmest of anniversaries: In 2017, more children were killed in than during any other year since the war began," he said.

Guterres said none of the Council's directives have been implemented: the provision of humanitarian aid and services has not been safe, unimpeded or sustained; no sieges have been lifted and not one critically sick or wounded person has yet been evacuated.

"I appeal to all parties for the full implementation of resolution 2401 throughout the whole of Syrian territory. The is ready to assist in any efforts to make that happen," the UN said, calling on all states "with influence" to exercise it in support of the efforts of the and the implementation of the resolution.

Guterres added that all parties involved should be reminded that even efforts to combat terrorist groups identified by the Council do not supersede these humanitarian obligations.

"On Thursday, this conflict will enter its eighth year. I refuse to lose my hope to see Syria rising from the ashes," he said.

Guterres also condemned reports of new in Syria's Eastern Ghouta over the weekend and repeated his call for the to "find unity" on the issue and ensure accountability.

In a statement, he expressed his outrage at reports that civilians in the last opposition-held area of Rural have continued to be targeted by toxic agents.

The Secretary-General's call comes after told the Security Council late Monday that at least 49 people had been killed, and hundreds were injured in an in Douma on Saturday evening.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, April 11 2018. 10:05 IST