United Nations humanitarian chief concerned about lack of humanitarian access to Syria

News and Press Release
Originally published

Statement of the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Valerie Amos

(New York, 10 May 2011): I am concerned about the lack of humanitarian access to parts of Syria, including Dera’a, and cities on the coast including Latakia, Jablah, Baniyas, and Douma.

Despite repeated requests to the Syrian authorities for access—including by the United Nations Secretary-General—the proposed mission to Dera’a on Sunday, 8 May has not gone ahead. The main objective of the mission was to independently assess the situation and plan a response if needed.

The reports of the deployment of tanks and of shelling of residential areas are alarming. In addition, ongoing security operations may be preventing the provision of basic social services. The suspension and limited delivery of UNRWA’s assistance to schools, clinics and community centres is also worrying. Of particular concern are reports that many wounded do not seek help in hospitals for fear of reprisals.

While we have no confirmation of the numbers of those detained, injured or killed, we remain concerned about alleged human rights violations in Syria.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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