News / Middle East

UN: Syrian People 'Suffering Grievously'

Injured Syrians arrive at a field hospital after an air strike hit their homes in the town of Azaz on the outskirts of Aleppo, Syria, Aug. 15, 2012.Injured Syrians arrive at a field hospital after an air strike hit their homes in the town of Azaz on the outskirts of Aleppo, Syria, Aug. 15, 2012.
x
Injured Syrians arrive at a field hospital after an air strike hit their homes in the town of Azaz on the outskirts of Aleppo, Syria, Aug. 15, 2012.
Injured Syrians arrive at a field hospital after an air strike hit their homes in the town of Azaz on the outskirts of Aleppo, Syria, Aug. 15, 2012.
Larry Freund
NEW YORK — A top United Nations official said Wednesday that the Syrian people are "suffering grievously" from what he described as the “appalling further militarization” of the conflict in that country.

In a report to the United Nations Security Council, the U.N. Under Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Jeffrey Feltman, said the Syrian government and the opposition are focusing on military operations, with government forces using heavy weapons on population centers.

We view the rapid deterioration of the humanitarian situation with growing alarm. About 2.5 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance, while the number of displaced [people] in Syria and the refugee flows to neighboring countries is growing," he said.

The U.N. emergency relief coordinator, Valerie Amos, told reporters that the most urgent needs in Syria are for health care, shelter, food, water and sanitation. Amos, who was in Syria last week, said the humanitarian situation there has worsened since her visit there in March. She said the United Nations is providing food to hundreds of thousands of Syrians, along with hygiene kits, blankets and other basic items.
But, she added, it is not enough.

Not when we’re dealing with the needs of an estimated 2.5 million people. We face problems with access to people in need, particularly where there is intense and ongoing fighting. But funding is also holding us back. If we had more resources, we could reach more people," she said.

The United Nations Security Council is scheduled to hold a ministerial-level meeting next week that is expected to focus on the humanitarian crisis in Syria. Amos said she hopes the council will be unified in asking the Syrian government to continue to open humanitarian access and will make it clear to the government and the opposition that civilians should be protected. She said the Syrian government is now very reluctant to allow large international humanitarian groups to work in Syria.

Meanwhile, in his report to the Security Council, U.N. Under Secretary-General Feltman warned that as the crisis in Syria continues to worsen, the situation in Lebanon has become more precarious.

Feltman said the need for continued international support to the Lebanese government and the Lebanese Armed Forces is increasingly important.

You May Like

UN Fears Rights Violations in China-backed Projects

UNHCHR investigates link between financing development and ignoring safeguards for human rights More

Boko Haram Violence Tests Nigerians’ Faith in Buhari

New president has promised to stem insurgency; he’s scheduled to meet with President Obama at White House July 20 More

Social Media Network Wants Privacy in User’s Hands

Encryption's popularity in messaging is exploding; now it's the foundation of a new social network More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Anonymous
August 23, 2012 7:52 PM
I now announce Bashar Assad no longer the leader of Syria. Treat him as the terrorist he is. He is no longer the leader of Syria anymore, he is a millitant, go get him. Nobody is following his rules anymore, in fact he is a wanted felon.

by: Vis8 from: USA
August 23, 2012 10:46 AM
Thanks to Obama and Hillary Clinton's 'help and support', jihadists like al-quaeda are in power for the first time in the Mid East: Egypt, Libya and soon in Syria. Israel is now worried that the chemical weapons of Syria falling into the hands of al-quaeda, and are about to send in 30,000 troops to Syria.
....add to this, the Obama administration's desperate need to start a war in time to get the 'sentimental vote' for his re-election.
Soon, we'll be sending shiploads of troops and spend a trillion dollars fighting the same hooligans that we are helping, now.
America needs to wake up. Four more years of Obama will result in the gift of a significant part of the world to the jihadis.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugeesi
X
Carolyn Weaver
July 06, 2015 6:47 PM
In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugees

In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video Rice Farmers Frustrated As Drought Grips Thailand

A severe drought in Thailand is limiting the growing season of the country’s important rice crop. Farmers are blaming the government for not doing more to protect a key export. Steve Sandford reports from Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Video

Video 'From This Day Forward' Reveals Difficult Journey of Transgender Parent

In her documentary, "From This Day Forward", filmmaker Sharon Shattuck reveals the personal journey of her transgender father, as he told his family that he always felt he was a woman inside and decided to live as one. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Floodwaters Threaten Iconic American Home

The Farnsworth House in the Midwest State of Illinois is one of the most iconic homes in America. Thousands of tourists visit the site every year. Its location near a river inspired the design of the house, but, as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, that very location is now threatening the existence of this National Historic Landmark.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.

VOA Blogs