UN condemns attacks on Syrian city of Douma

UN Humanitarian Chief says "attacks on civilians are unlawful, unacceptable and must stop"

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

People inspect the damage after what activists said were airstrikes by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad on a busy marketplace in the Douma neighborhood of Damascus, Syria August 12, 2015

Updated Aug 18, 2015

During his three-day visit to Damascus, the United Nations Humanitarian Chief Stephen O'Brien said on Monday that he is “horrified” by the attacks on civilians that are taking place in Syria.

He warned that the conflict in Syria not only “severely affects” the lives of millions of Syrians, but it also threatens the entire region.

O'Brien told reporters in Damascus that "attacks on civilians are unlawful, unacceptable and must stop."

In his visit to Syria, O’Brien met senior officials and visited the central province of Homs.

O’Brien’s comments came a day after Syrian regime’s warplanes had killed around 100 people and wounded more than 250 in air strikes on the Damascus outskirt of Douma in one of the bloodiest and brutal incidents since the country’s crisis began in March, 2011.

"I am particularly appalled by reports of air strikes yesterday, causing scores of civilian deaths and hundreds injured, right in the center of Douma," O'Brien said. "I am horrified by the total disrespect for civilian life in this conflict."

"I appeal to each and every party to this protracted conflict to protect civilians and respect international humanitarian law," he said.

O'Brien said, "I remain extremely concerned for the welfare of the 4.6 million people stuck in hard-to-reach and besieged areas."

The UN's Syria envoy, Staffan de Mistura, on Monday condemned the air strikes on Douma and civilian’s killed by the government as "unacceptable".

"The government's bombing of [Douma] yesterday is devastating," de Mistura said. "Hitting crowded civilian markets killing almost one hundred of its own citizens by a government is unacceptable in any circumstances."

Syrian conflict has killed more than 250,000 people and wounded at least a million, while more than half of the country’s population has fled their homes. More than 6.7 million civilians have fled the country while 4.5 million are displaced internally. 
TRTWorld and agencies