UN calls for civilian protection in northwestern Syria

Orient Net 2019-05-07 08:35:00

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United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres urged on Monday (May 6) the warring parties in Syria's northwest, where the Assad regime and Russia have stepped up bombardments, to protect civilians and respect a ceasefire, AFP reported.

Guterres “urges all parties to uphold international humanitarian law and protect civilians,” a statement read.

“He calls for an urgent de-escalation of the situation as the holy month of Ramadan begins and urges the parties to recommit fully to the ceasefire arrangements of the memorandum signed on 17 September 2018.”

Guterres also pressed the Astana process guarantors — Iranian regime, Russia and Turkey — to ensure that these steps are taken.

The UN statement noted that three health facilities were reportedly hit by air strikes on Sunday — for a total of at least seven hit since April 28.

Nine schools have also been hit since April 30, and many schools in the area have closed their doors indefinitely.

Guterres is alarmed by reports of aerial attacks on population centers and civilian infrastructure resulting in hundreds of civilian dead and injured and over 150,000 newly displaced persons.