Three years after the beginning of the current crisis in Syria, around 250.000 civilians are living under siege across the country. Many are enduring appalling conditions in their struggle to survive. Most live in areas besieged by Syrian government forces and have been effectively confined for a year or more in areas being bombed and shelled on a regular basis. In other areas, civilians have come under siege from armed opposition forces who have blocked the delivery of much-needed supplies. Their situation is desperate. They lack food, medical supplies and fuel. Some have resorted to killing and eating cats and dogs. The UN Security Council belatedly has addressed the unfolding humanitarian crisis in Syria by demanding the immediate lifting of “sieges of populated areas”. But so far, the parties to the conflict are not doing enough to end the suffering of civilians.
On the third anniversary of conflict, let us stand #WithSyria
Starving civilians as a method of warfare is a war crime.
UN Security Council resolution 2139 calls on all parties to the conflict in Syria to put an end to all forms of violence and to stop human rights violations, including those amounting to war crimes and crimes against humanity. It also calls on them to lift sieges of populated areas and to allow unhindered humanitarian access for UN humanitarian agencies and their implementing partners, including across conflict lines and across borders.
I am writing to call on you to use your influence as a member of the UN Security Council to ensure the effective implementation of resolution 2139 of 22 February 2014.
As you are aware, Syrian civilians continue to suffer. Not enough has been done to implement the requirements of the resolution. I therefore call on you, and your fellow members of the Security Council, to take the following actions: