Syria: UN Security Council should take immediate action against indiscriminate attacks on civilians

19 Jun, 2015 | Press Releases

19 June 2015

In a Attac submitted today, 76 organisations (including No Peace Without Justice) call on the UN Security Council to take immediate action on indiscriminate attacks against civilians in Syria.

We the undersigned are a coalition of human rights and humanitarian organizations working to protect and assist the civilians of Syria. We wish to express our collective outrage at the never ending state of unchecked brutality in Syria and call on the UN Security Council to take immediate action.  Given continuing indiscriminate attacks against civilians within Syria, we urge that all UN Security Council Ambassadors use their Security Council membership to now take steps to implement further diplomatic measures given clear and ongoing non-compliance with Resolution 2139, specifically measures to establish a mechanism to track and publically expose indiscriminate attacks by any means against civilians, including barrel bombs or car bombs, and to lay down clear consequences for violators.

Syria is continuing to sink further into the abyss and Syrian civilians continue to pay for this with their lives: 66 percent of civilian deaths during May were attributable to airstrikes[1] and many others continue to die and are maimed as a result of indiscriminate attacks perpetrated by all parties to the conflict. Despite this shocking reality, the Syria conflict appears to be considered “business as usual”, as the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon recently denounced. This is unacceptable.

Sixteen months ago the UN Security Council demanded an end to “…all attacks against civilians, as well as the indiscriminate employment of weapons in populated areas, including shelling and aerial bombardment, such as the use of barrel bombs” in Resolution 2139. Yet since then the Council has stood by as this demand has been repeatedly violated month after month with unrelenting and brutal attacks against schools, markets, and hospitals and the deaths of thousands of Syrian civilians. This must not be allowed to continue. Expressing “deep concern” in statements to the press while Syrians are killed and maimed in attacks which violate International Humanitarian Law day after day is a woefully inadequate response. Syrians deserve to be protected from all indiscriminate attacks, not just those involving chemical weapons.

We hope that this letter sent by 76 Non-Governmental Organizations working with and for Syrians, will prompt the Council to set up a mechanism to track and publically expose indiscriminate attacks by any means against civilians, including barrel bombs or car bombs, and to lay down clear consequences for violators.

[1] According to Violations Documentation Center, May 2015 Monthly Statistical report – available here.

This letter is signed by:
1. Action des Chrétiens pour l’Abolition de la Torture (ACAT)
2. Algerian League for Defense of Human Rights
3. Alkarama Foundation
4. Alliance for Peacebuilding
5. Amnesty International
6. Andalus Institute for Tolerance and anti-Violence Studies
7. Arab Coalition for Sudan
8. Arab Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI)
9. Arab Organisation for Human Rights – Libya
10. Arab Organisation for Human Rights – Mauritania
11. Arab Program For Human Rights Activists
12. Bahrain Human Rights Watch Society (BHRWS)
13. Baytna Syria
14. Broederlijk Delen
15. CAABU (Council for Arab-British Understanding)
17. Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies
18. CARE International
19. Caritas Czech Republic
20. Center for Civilians in Conflict (CIVIC)
22. Concern Worldwide
23. Darfur Bar Association
24. Development and Peace
25. Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Network (EMHRN)
26. Fraternity Center for Democracy and Civil Society
27. Friends Committee on National Legislation
28. Global Center for R2P
29. Handicap International
30. Hand in Hand for Syria
31. Human Rights & Democracy Media Center “SHAMS”
32. Human Rights First Society – Saudi Arabia
33. Human Rights Watch
34. Humanist Institute for Development Cooperation (HIVOS)
35. International Rescue Committee (IRC)
36. Islamic Relief USA
37. Karam Foundation
38. Ligue des droits de l’Homme (LDH)
39. Madani Organization
40. Mayday Rescue
41. Médecins du Monde/ Doctors of the World
42. Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies
43. Nonviolence Network in the Arab Countries
44. No Peace Without Justice
45. Norwegian People’s Aid
46. Norwegian Church Aid
47. Norwegian Refugee Council
48. NuDay Syria
49. Omani Monitor for Human Rights
50. Palestinian League for Human Rights – Syria
51. Pax Christi Flanders
52. People In Need
53. Permanent Peace Movement
54. Phenix Centre for Economic and Informatics Studies (Jordan)
55. Physicians for Human Rights
56. Refugees International
57. Relief International
58. Rethink Rebuild Society
59. Save the Children
60. Secours Islamique France
62. Sudan Social Development Organisations (SUDO UK)
63. Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS)
64. Syria Civil Defence
65. Syria Relief
66. Syrian Relief and Development
67. The Day After Association
68. The Helen Bamber Foundation
69. Trocaire
70. Tunisian Forum for Economic and Social Rights
71. United to End Genocide
72. United for a Free Syria
73. Violations Documentation Center in Syria
74. Welthungerhilfe
75. World Jewish Relief
76. Zarga Organisation for Rural Development (ZORD) – Sudan