Damascus, lukewarm response to UN and the International Red Cross
Damascus (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The Assad regime has welcomed the new UN and the Arab League representative and praised the "impartial" work the International Red Cross. The aim is to try to find a peaceful way to resolve the conflict.
Yesterday the Syrian UN representative Bashar al-Jaafari confirmed to the General Assembly of the United Nations that his country will work with the new UN / Arab League envoy Lakhdar Brahimi. The diplomat stressed that the resignation of Kofi Annan is not "reason enough to abandon his plan for peace" which was never concretely applied, because of the violation of the ceasefire by the regime and rebels.
Meanwhile, in Damascus Bashar Al-Assad met Peter Maurer, the new head of the International Red Cross. The talks focused on strengthening cooperation between the government and the organization to resolve the humanitarian crisis in the country, affected by civil war and sanctions. In August, the number of refugees fleeing the country exceeded 100,000. Since the beginning of the year, the ICRC and the Syrian Red Crescent have distributed aid to more than 800,000 people, mostly refugees, and assured supply of drinking water in sufficient quantity for a million people.
Despite the tepid good intentions on the part of the regime, rebels and the international community, the country is still in the grips of fighting. Damascus and Aleppo are the scene of a massive offensive that has already resulted in dozens of deaths. At the meeting of the Assembly of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon, the UN secretary general termed the countries that sell weapons to the rebels and the regime in Damascus "carriers of misery". Among the nations providing weapons and military support to the two parties to the conflict are Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey, Russia, Iran, but also the United States and other European countries. Without naming names, the UN secretary general said there is the risk of an escalation of endless violence. "The conflict is intensifying," said Ban. "The more it continues - he added - the harder will be to contain, to find a political solution and rebuild the country and its economy."