During the 45th session of the Human Rights Council, a Qatari official expressed the country’s strong condemnation of rights violations committed in Syria.
Qatar slammed violent acts committed against the Syrian people, especially those revealed by a recent Commission of Inquiry report in areas under government forces, a Qatari official said on Wednesday.
In a conversation with the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic, Abdullah Al Nuaimi, Deputy Permanent Representative of Qatar to the United Nations Office in Geneva, highlighted the countries’ disapproval over the killing, bombing and military operations against civilians in the war-torn country.
Nuaimi said violations, such as the lack of freedom, enforced disappearance, and torture by government forces, are still continuing in the country, stripping away people’s basic rights and affecting people’s access to healthcare.
“The insistence of the Syrian regime and its allies not to implement a complete cessation of fighting in all parts of Syria, and their continuing military operations in the city of Idlib, confirms the fact that they cannot be trusted because they only believe in a military solution, and use talks and political negotiations as a way to waste time,” said Al Nuaimi.
The remarks followed the publishing of the Commission of Inquiry’s 25-page report which documents continuing violations and abuses by nearly every conflict actor controlling territory in Syria.
“It also highlights an increase in patterns of targeted abuses such as assassinations, sexual and gender-based violence against women and girls, and looting or appropriation of private property, with sectarian undertones. Civilian suffering is a constant and personal feature of this crisis,” the United Nations reported.
For eight years now, Syrians have endured continued violence, deteriorating living conditions, inadequate healthcare, destroyed schools and infrastructure, and human rights violations at the hands of government forces as well as rebel militants.
Between April and August last year, more than 400,000 people were forced to flee their homes, according to UN statistics.
Recently, the government launched a crackdown on opposition groups.
“In Daraa and Suwayda, the security situation significantly deteriorated, with a number of incidents of armed violence between the multitude of armed actors vying for control. In Damascus, around Rif Damascus, Suwaydaa and Daraa, arbitrary detention, enforced disappearance and torture remained pervasive,” the UN report stated.
“The price of food and basic goods significantly increased in government-held areas, with the devaluation of the Syrian pound exacerbating an already difficult living situation. At the same time, the government continued to prevent thousands of individuals from returning to their homes in areas that had been retaken in the preceding five years,” it added.
In addition, the number of authorised border crossings was reduced to one, impacting the lives of millions of people in need of humanitarian aid.
This has raised concerns over humanitarian access to northern Syria, Al Nuaimi said.
More than 500,000 people have been killed in the Syrian conflict, which began in 2011 after the Bashar al-Assad regime launched a crackdown on protest movements in the country.