UN chief warns Syria crisis worsening

2012-04-05 22:41
New York - Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said on Thursday the crisis in Syria was getting worse and claiming more lives every day even though President Bashar Assad's government insisted it was withdrawing troops ahead of a UN deadline to end the violence.

Ban appealed to Assad "to show vision and leadership" and keep his pledge to pull troops and heavy weapons out of cities and towns by April 10 and he also urged the opposition to be ready to stop all violence if the Syrian government meets the deadline.

"Cities, towns and villages have been turned into war zones and the sources of violence are proliferating," Ban told the UN General Assembly.

"The human rights of the Syrian people continue to be violated. ... Humanitarian needs are growing dramatically."

His comments came as activists reported that Syrian troops attacked the Damascus suburb of Douma, an assault they said shows that Assad was intensifying violence in the days before the April 10 deadline.

His crackdown on the yearlong uprising has left at least 9 000 people dead, according to the UN.

A UN team earlier on Thursday arrived in Damascus to negotiate the possible deployment of UN monitors for any cease-fire between Syrian troops and rebel forces.

Kofi Annan, the UN-Arab League envoy trying to end the conflict, said Syria had informed him of partial withdrawals from three locations - Idlib, Zabadani and Daraa - but it was clear that more far-reaching action is urgently required.

Russia and China have vetoed two Security Council resolutions condemning Assad's regime for the crackdown on protesters and have ruled out any mention of possible sanctions against Syria.

Diplomats said Thursday's presidential statement was watered down at the insistence of Russia and China from a "demand" to a "call" on Syria to implement the April 10 deadline.

Read more on:    kofi annan  |  bashar assad  |  ban ki-moon  |  syria  |  us  |  syria conflict

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.