UN / SYRIA

30-Oct-2023 00:04:47
The UN Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Syria said, “I am sounding an alarm that the situation is now at its most dangerous for a long time”. UNIFEED
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STORY: UN / SYRIA
TRT: 04:47
SOURCE: UNIFEED
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / ARABIC / NATS

DATELINE: 30 OCTOBER 2023, NEW YORK CITY / FILE
SHOTLIST
FILE – NEW YORK CITY

1.Wide shot, exterior, United Nations Headquarters

30 OCTOBER 2023, NEW YORK CITY

2. Wide shot, Security Council
3. Med shot, Security Council
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Geir Pedersen, Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Syria:
“Since March 2020, the Syrian conflict has been in a kind of strategic stalemate characterized by static front lines, persistent violence and sporadic escalations, with de facto authorities entrenching their control and five foreign armies present and active.”
5. Wide shot, Security Council
6.SOUNDBITE (English) Geir Pedersen, Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Syria:
“Today, I am sounding an alarm that the situation is now at its most dangerous for a long time. Mr. President, I say this because on top of the violence emanating from the Syrian conflict itself, the Syrian people now face a terrifying prospect of a potential wider escalation, given the alarming developments in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory and the region. Spillover into Syria is not just a risk; it has already begun. Airstrikes, attributed to Israel, have hit Aleppo and Damascus airports several times during the reporting period, temporarily halting the UN’s Humanitarian Air Service which operates from those airports and services Syria’s humanitarian programs.”
7. Wide shot, Security Council
8.SOUNDBITE (English) Geir Pedersen, Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Syria:
“Complacency cannot be the answer. If it is, then I fear the already-fraying status quo may fully collapse, bringing untold misery to the Syrian civilians and radiating further instability across a region that is already at breaking point. We must de-escalate and de-escalate now, for the sake of Syria.”
9. Wide shot, Security Council
10.SOUNDBITE (English) Edem Wosornu, Director of Operations and Advocacy, Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs:
“In recent weeks, the world’s attention has been fixed on the crisis in Gaza, and rightly so. But at the same time, we must not turn away from humanitarian crises that persist elsewhere, on a vast scale, including in the same region. I join you today from Cairo, having spent the past week visiting a number of countries in the region, including Syria.”
11. Wide shot, Security Council
12. SOUNDBITE (English) Edem Wosornu, Director of Operations and Advocacy, Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs:
“In north-west Syria, we have seen the most significant escalation in violence since 2019. According to OHCHR, at least 70 civilians had been killed as of 20 October, including 36 women and 14 children. The civilian fatalities span both government areas – notably, as the Special Envoy has said, in the drone attack on the Homs military academy graduation ceremony on 5 October – and non-Government areas. Many more have been injured.”
13. Wide shot, Security Council
14. SOUNDBITE (English) Edem Wosornu, Director of Operations and Advocacy, Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs:
“The escalation in hostilities has also had a deep impact on humanitarian workers and operations, particularly in the north-west of the country. Three aid workers were among those killed, and many organizations were forced to temporarily suspend operations. Some activities, including some nutrition services and safe spaces for women and girls, remain suspended.”
15. Wide shot, Security Council
16. SOUNDBITE (Arabic) Alhakam Dandy, Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Syrian Arab Republic:
“The world's eyes are fixed at the Israeli aggression in the region today. The aggression continues where the occupying forces have committed dozens of massacres and brutal attacks and crimes in Gaza. Israel continues flaming fire in the region. In only 10 days there have been four attacks against two civilian airports and had also let to hindering the humanitarian aid operations of the United Nations.”
18. Wide shot, Security Council
STORYLINE
The UN Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Syria, Geir Pedersen, said, “I am sounding an alarm that the situation is now at its most dangerous for a long time”.
Briefing the Security Council today (30 Oct) on the situation in Syria, Pedersen noted, “I say this because on top of the violence emanating from the Syrian conflict itself, the Syrian people now face a terrifying prospect of a potential wider escalation, given the alarming developments in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory and the region.”

He stressed, “Spillover into Syria is not just a risk; it has already begun.”

The Special Envoy also said, “since March 2020, the Syrian conflict has been in a kind of strategic stalemate characterized by static front lines, persistent violence and sporadic escalations, with de facto authorities entrenching their control and five foreign armies present and active.”

He continued, “complacency cannot be the answer. If it is, then I fear the already-fraying status quo may fully collapse, bringing untold misery to the Syrian civilians and radiating further instability across a region that is already at breaking point.”

Pedersen concluded, “we must de-escalate and de-escalate now, for the sake of Syria.”

Edem Wosornu, Director of Operations and Advocacy from the UN humanitarian affairs office spoke on behalf of the Humanitarian Coordinator Martin Griffiths.

Wosornu said, “In recent weeks, the world’s attention has been fixed on the crisis in Gaza, and rightly so. But at the same time, we must not turn away from humanitarian crises that persist elsewhere, on a vast scale, including in the same region. I join you today from Cairo, having spent the past week visiting a number of countries in the region, including Syria.”

He added, “In north-west Syria, we have seen the most significant escalation in violence since 2019. According to OHCHR, at least 70 civilians had been killed as of 20 October, including 36 women and 14 children. The civilian fatalities span both government areas – notably, as the Special Envoy has said, in the drone attack on the Homs military academy graduation ceremony on 5 October – and non-Government areas. Many more have been injured.”

According to her, “the escalation in hostilities has also had a deep impact on humanitarian workers and operations, particularly in the north-west of the country. Three aid workers were among those killed, and many organizations were forced to temporarily suspend operations. Some activities, including some nutrition services and safe spaces for women and girls, remain suspended.”

Alhakam Dandy, Deputy Permanent Representative of the Syrian Arab Republic to the United Nations, said, "The world's eyes are fixed at the Israeli aggression in the region today. The aggression continues where the occupying forces have committed dozens of massacres and brutal attacks and crimes in Gaza.”

He added, “Israel continues flaming fire in the region. In only 10 days there have been four attacks against two civilian airports and had also let to hindering the humanitarian aid operations of the United Nations.”
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