The Elders today condemned the continued devastating attacks on civilian targets in the Syrian city of Aleppo by government forces and their Russian allies, and called for an immediate cessation to allow unimpeded access for humanitarian aid.
They deplored the paralysis of the United Nations Security Council in the face of such a brutal military assault, which has shown utter disregard for civilian life as well as facilities such as hospitals that, under international humanitarian law, must always be protected.
Kofi Annan, Chair of The Elders and former UN Secretary-General, said: “The assault on Aleppo is an assault on the whole world. When hospitals, schools and homes are bombed indiscriminately, killing and maiming hundreds of innocent children, these are acts that constitute an attack on our shared, fundamental human values. Our collective cry for action must be heard, and acted upon, by all those engaged in this dreadful war.”
The Elders deeply regret that the cease-fire established thanks to the serious efforts of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and US Secretary of State John Kerry has collapsed a mere few days after it came into effect.
Lakhdar Brahimi, Elder and former UN Special Envoy to Syria, added: “The people of Aleppo and the rest of the world, in their agony, will not forget and will not forgive until the leaders of Russia, the United States and the other members of the Security Council act with strength and unity to bring this bloody war to an end. As the current President of the Security Council, Russia has a great responsibility to resume active cooperation with the US and work with all others concerned to forge consensus and to devise a viable strategy capable of ending Syria’s agony.”