Delivered on 26 June 2018
Delivered by Mr. Jefferey Salim Waheed, Minister|Deputy Permanent Representative, Permanent Mission of Maldives tot he United Nations Office at Geneva.
My delegation thanks the Independent International Commission of Inquiry for the comprehensive oral update on this issue and their continued work.
The Maldives is once again taking the floor in the plight of the Syrian people who continues to suffer from an ongoing civil war which had further escalated in eastern Ghouta past year.
The Maldives is alarmed by the findings of the Commission of Inquiry.
According to the COI ‘certain acts perpetrated by pro-Government forces during the siege laid to eastern Ghouta, including the deliberate starvation of the civilian population as a method of warfare, amount to the crime against humanity of inhumane acts causing serious mental and physical suffering’
Further ‘In January 2018, healthcare personnel in eastern Ghouta reported that over 700 patients were facing life-threatening conditions and required immediate evacuation, dozens of whom perished while awaiting evacuation clearance’
The deliberate targeting of essential services, such as health facilities, schools, water resources, care workers, and ambulances contravene international humanitarian law, not to mention the most basic concepts of human decency.
We urge the Syrian authorities and all other parties to fully cooperate with the COI, internationally mandated bodies, including concerning access, and providing full and unfettered access.
The catastrophic humanitarian situation in the Syria underscores the failure of the international community to protect civilians, most notably children. It is our moral duty to ensure a safe place and all the basic needs to the Syrian victims especially women, children and young girls.
The Maldives calls on the international community at large and this Council in particular to commit to the unconditional de-escalation of violence and address meaningful action to undertake efforts to alleviate the suffering of the people of Syria.
Thank you, Mr. President,