World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Syria Talks on Politics - Question of Aid Delivery Stalls

Syria Talks Turn to Political Issues as Question of Aid Delivery Stalls – UN-Arab League Envoy

New York, Jan 27 2014 - Discussions on humanitarian issues at the Syria talks in Geneva “have not produced much,” said the Joint Special Representative of the United Nations and the League of Arab States today, but he added “there is still hope,” and the talks will resume tomorrow.

Lakhdar Brahimi briefed journalists at the Palais des Nations after a third day of talks with him acting as a buffer between representatives of the Syrian Government and opposition groups.

“In the morning we discussed a paper presented by the Government, general principles, most of those principles are already in the Geneva Declaration,” he said. “And tomorrow we are going to talk about the Geneva Declaration itself and see if we can start debate.”

The discussions focused this weekend on getting an aid convoy into Homs, and on allowing civilians to leave the besieged city, cut off from supplies. The idea is that if agreement can be reached on humanitarian issues, it could bring the parties together to work through the political challenges.

The Syrian Government has agreed to allow women and children to exit “immediately”, but has asked for a list of the men’s names before letting the rest of the civilians pass.

“I think the Government is willing to make it happen, but it’s not easy because there are snipers and there are all sorts of problems,” Mr. Brahimi said.

On the food convoy, a topic that was to be discussed today in Syria by the Homs Governor, his advisors and the Government in Damascus, “there is no decision yet to let them in.”

“So I am still begging, asking, that we, something be done about these areas, whether these areas are under siege by the Government or by the armed groups,” Mr. Brahimi stressed.

Of the more than 9.3 million people within the country needing humanitarian aid, over 2.5 million live in areas where access is seriously constrained or non-existent, such as Homs.

In addition, well over 100,000 people have been killed and nearly 9 million others driven from their homes since the conflict erupted in March 2011 between the Government and various groups seeking the ouster of President Bashar al-Assad.

“My expectation from this conference is that the unjust war will stop. But I know this is not going to happen today or tomorrow or next week,” Mr. Brahimi told journalists, adding that despite a lack of progress, there is “will to continue these discussions.”

The goal of the conference is to achieve a political solution to the three-year-long conflict through a comprehensive agreement between the two sides for the full implementation of the Geneva communiqué, adopted after the first international meeting on the issue on 30 June 2012, and since endorsed by the UN Security Council.

The communiqué lays out key steps in a process to end the violence. Among others, it calls for the establishment of a transitional governing body, with full executive powers and made up by members of the present Government and the opposition and other groups, as part of agreed principles and guidelines for a Syrian-led political transition.

Mr. Brahimi, who has briefed journalists daily since the latest round of the talks started, also called on the two sides to be “a bit careful” with statement made to the media.

“I have told them this afternoon that there was need to be responsible and respect, if possible, the confidentiality of the discussions,” the joint envoy said. “If you don’t respect the confidentiality at least don’t overstate the case.”

For more details go to UN News Centre at http://www.un.org/news

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

'Very Concerned' After Court Ruling: UNHRC On Transfer Of 267 People From Australia To Nauru

Most of these people were reportedly brought to Australia from Nauru to receive medical treatment and are in a fragile physical and mental state. The group includes more than 12 women and at least one child who have allegedly suffered sexual assault or harassment while in Nauru. The group also includes 37 children born in Australia. More>>

ALSO:

Sanctions To Be Lifted: NZ Welcomes Implementation Of Iran Nuclear Deal

Duty Minister Nikki Kaye has welcomed the next stage in the historic nuclear deal between Iran, the Five Permanent (P5) members of the United Nations Security Council, and Germany... “New Zealand has now started the domestic process for removing the UN sanctions." More>>

ALSO:

Pre-Davos Reports: 62 People Own Same Wealth As Half The World

Runaway inequality has created a world where 62 people own as much wealth as the poorest half of the world’s population – a figure that has fallen from 388 just five years ago, according to an Oxfam report published today ahead of the annual gathering of the world’s financial and political elites in Davos.. More>>

ALSO:

Jakarta: UN Secretary-General On Attacks

The Secretary-General condemns the bombings and gun attacks in Jakarta today... there is absolutely no justification for such acts of terrorism. He hopes the perpetrators of today's attacks will be swiftly brought to justice. More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf: America, The Gated

How, in a global metropolis like New York, do you write about immigration as a problem to be solved? And yet immigration is a hot button issue among those fighting to break away from the unruly clump of starters in the race for Republican nominee. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news