Aid agencies say UN has failed Syria


Damning report shows UN resolutions aren't working 

12th March 2015 by Robert Armour 0 Comments

Aid agencies say 2014 was the worst year of the Syrian conflict so far and that three United Nations Security Council resolutions aimed at alleviating the suffering had failed.

Failing Syria, a report by 21 humanitarian and human rights organisations, says last year has been the worst for civilians since the conflict began in 2011.

UN resolutions passed last year demanded an end to arbitrary killing and torture and the removal of barriers to aid access imposed by the Syrian government and insurgents.

"There have been more killings, more bombings, a massive increase in displacement and a huge increase in the number of people in need of humanitarian assistance," said Daniel Gorevan, a Syria policy advisor at Oxfam.

"The Security Council resolutions have essentially failed," he said.

Gorevan said Security Council members, which include Russia and the United States, had not implemented their own resolutions by failing to pressure warring parties to stop indiscriminate killing and increase aid access.

The report also said humanitarian funding had decreased. In 2013, 71% of funds needed to support civilians inside Syria and refugees in neighbouring countries were provided. In 2014, this had declined to 57%.

There have been more killings, more bombings...a massive increase in displacement

A separate report released this week by two U.N. agencies working in Syria painted a dire picture of life four years into the conflict.

The population has shrunk by 15% and life expectancy has dropped 24 years, from an average of 79 to 55, it said.

Syria's GDP has dropped by nearly $120 billion and four out of every five Syrians live below the national poverty line.

Half of all school children have not attended school for the past three years, the report said.

Medicines Sans Frontiers (MSF) said from the estimated 2,500 doctors who worked in Aleppo, Syria's second biggest city, before the conflict, fewer than 100 now remain.

The rest have fled, become internally displaced or have been kidnapped or killed.

It said this has left a "catastrophic gap in expertise and experience in medical care".

Meanwhile, satellite imagery has been released showing the number of lights visible over Syria at night had fallen by 83% since March 2011.