News / Middle East

UN Chief Urges End to Militarization of Syria Crisis

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Aug. 14, 2012. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Aug. 14, 2012.
x
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Aug. 14, 2012.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Aug. 14, 2012.
Margaret Besheer
NEW YORK — The U.N. secretary-general told the international community Tuesday that the continuing militarization of the Syrian conflict is “deeply tragic and highly dangerous.”  Ban Ki-moon, just back from a trip to Iran, said that regional powers should use their influence to end the violence.  Ban urged governments to contribute generously to an appeal to help alleviate the growing humanitarian crisis.
 
Speaking before the 194-member U.N. General Assembly, Ban Ki-moon urged governments that have been providing arms to the Syrian authorities and the rebels to stop.

“I appeal to all outside parties, especially the countries in the region, to do all they can to end this trend," said Ban. "Those who provide arms to either side are only contributing to further misery and the risk of unintended consequences as the fighting intensifies and spreads.”

Russia has been the Syrian government's main supplier of military weapons for decades.  Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey say they have sent money and arms to aid the rebels since the crisis began some 18 months ago.

While in Tehran last week for a summit of the Non-Aligned Movement,  Ban met with Syria's prime minister and foreign minister, and repeated his demand that all sides cease all forms of violence - in particular, that the government end its use of heavy weapons.

Ban reiterated that regional leaders have a key role to play in creating the conditions to find a solution to the crisis, which has claimed more than 18,000 lives and made more than 1 million people homeless.  The humanitarian crisis is spreading beyond Syria's borders as more than 225,000 Syrians have fled to neighboring countries.  The secretary-general said a U.N. appeal for $180 million to fund urgent humanitarian needs is only half-funded as overall needs continue to grow.

“The conflict is intensifying.  The longer it goes on, the more difficult it will be to contain.  The more difficult it will be to find a political solution.  The more challenging it will be to rebuild the country and the economy," he said.

Ban said it is in this context that the new Syria envoy, veteran diplomat Lakhdar Brahimi, takes up his mission, a role he characterized as “daunting, but not insurmountable.”

In brief remarks to the General Assembly, Brahimi said he would leave soon for Cairo to consult with the chief of the Arab League and then go to Damascus.  He warned that the situation in Syria is deteriorating severely and urged international unity to help bring an end to the crisis.

You May Like

Lebanese Media Unite to Support Palestinians in Gaza

Joint newscast billed as Arab world’s first unified news bulletin in support of Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip More

Photogallery Australian PM Alleges ‘Coverup’ at MH17 Crash Site

Meanwhile, Russia's ambassador to Malaysia denies plane's black boxes were opened before they were handed over to Malaysian officials More

Despite Advances in AIDS Treatment, Stigma Lingers

Leading immunologist tells VOA that stigma is often what prevents those infected with disease from seeking treatment More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: ADEL ALSHEAR from: STOCKHOLM SWEDEN
September 05, 2012 10:06 AM
THIS IS A RASCSIM IN ALASMALAEH SHIIT . THIS IS A RASCSIM IN ALAGHA ALASMALAEH SHIIT .

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Formi
X
July 22, 2014 10:26 AM
Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Chicago’s Argonne Lab Developing Battery of the Future

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science awarded a $120 million grant to a new technology center focused on battery development - headquartered at Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago, Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there scientists are making the next technological breakthroughs in energy storage.
Video

Video In NW Pakistan, Army Offensive Causes Massive Number of Displaced

Pakistan’s army offensive in North Waziristan has resulted in the large-scale displacement of the local population. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from northwest Pakistan where authorities say around 80 percent of the estimated 1 million internally displaced persons [IDPs] have settled in Bannu district, while much of the remaining 20 percent are scattered in nearby cities.
Video

Video Kurdish Peshmerga Force Secures Kirkuk, Its Oil

The Kurdistan regional government has sent its Peshmerga troops into the adjacent province of Kirkuk to drive out insurgents, and to secure the area's rich oil fields. By doing this, the regional government has added a fourth province to the three it officially controls. The oil also provides revenue that could make an independent Kurdistan economically strong. VOA’s Jeffrey Young went out with the Peshmerga and filed this report.
Video

Video Malaysia Reeling: Second Air Disaster in Four Months

Malaysia is reeling from the second air disaster in four months involving the country’s flag carrier. Flight 340 vanished in March and despite an extensive search, no debris has been found. And on Thursday, Flight 17, likely hit by a surface-to-air missile, came apart over eastern Ukraine. The two incidents together have left more than 500 people dead. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Kuala Lumpur.

AppleAndroid