Ban: "Time to end the killing in Syria and reach peace."

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Ban Ki-moon

The crisis in Syria is the biggest security and peace challenge in the world now, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said at the official opening of the General Assembly Debate in New York.

Over 100,000 people have been killed in the conflict and well over seven million have fled their homes.

Furthermore, a chemical attack on civilians on 21 August in the suburbs of Damascus killed hundreds.

Mr. Ban Ki-moon called it "the worst chemical weapons attack on civilians in a quarter century."

In his address, he urged the Government of Syria to comply with its obligations under the Chemicals Weapons Convention.

"I look forward to the imminent adoption of an enforceable and binding Security Council resolution on chemical weapons. This should be followed immediately by humanitarian action. UN human rights monitors could play a useful role in reporting and deterring further violations. I call on the Syrian Government and the opposition to uphold their obligations under international humanitarian and human rights law. They must lift all obstacles to humanitarian access, and end the unconscionable targeting of medical facilities and personnel. They must release the thousands of men, women and children whose detention has no basis in international law."

The UN chief also called on the international community to ensure the safeguarding and destruction of Syria's chemical weapons stockpiles and programmes.

Jocelyne Sambira, United Nations.

Duration: 1’36″

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