Brussels, 24 September 2016
The situation in Aleppo has seen a dramatic and rapid deterioration over the past 48 hours, despite continuing efforts of the international community to re-establish the previous cessation of hostilities. The indiscriminate suffering being caused among innocent civilians by the fire-bombing, shelling and assault, and the deprivation of supplies including through the deliberate targeting of a humanitarian convoy last week, leading now to the cutting off of water supplies to the majority of civilians still in the city, is an unacceptable breach of international humanitarian law. The human suffering being caused is an affront to the whole world. It risks to take us ever further from a negotiated settlement of the conflict, which remains the only way of bringing it to an end.
We therefore call on all those countries with influence on the regime, as well as those with contacts among the armed opposition, to apply the maximum pressure to cease the attacks, allow unhindered and continuous humanitarian access to those in need, and resume political negotiations under the auspices of the UN in Geneva as swiftly as possible. The EU will review the additional actions it can take to bring all parties to the negotiating table.