Syria’s permanent delegation to the United Nations argued that the issue of protection of civilians in armed conflict is still being handled with open bias and double standards, more than 16 years after the Security Council started regular discussions of this issue.
“This issue has been repeatedly used to serve agendas that are completely contradictory to the basic norms underpinning international law and the UN Charter,” Charge d’ Affaires of the Syrian delegation to the UN Munzer Munzer said at the Security Council session on Tuesday.
He denounced the council’s silence on Israeli violations of international law, international humanitarian law, human rights law, and counterterrorism-related laws, saying this silence has emboldened Israel into thinking that it is immune from accountability, allowing it to continue its policies of aggression in the occupied Syrian Golan and other occupied Arab territories, as well as its support for terrorist organizations in the disengagement zone in the Golan.
Munzer reiterated the need to protect civilians living under Israeli occupation in the Golan and other Arab territories, demanding that the Security Council carries out its responsibilities, according to the UN Charter to end the Israeli occupation and hold accountable the governments supporting terrorism, and to compel them to commit to the relevant resolutions, especially numbers 2170, 2178, 2199, and 2235.
The responsibility for protecting civilians from possible dangers, including terrorist acts, is that of the state in control over a given territory, which is the only authority and party authorized to preserve stability and security in its territories, he noted.
The issue of protecting civilians, Munzer added, must be dealt with holistically, addressing all that might affect them, including putting an end to the unilateral coercive measures imposed by some countries on others, like Syria, which are deemed illegitimate by the UN, and making UNSC member states abide by resolutions related to fighting terrorism and constricting its sources of funding.
This article was edited by The Syrian Observer. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.