Al-Jaafari calls for lifting coercive measures on Syria which hinder tackling coronavirus, achieving development

New York, SANA- Syria’s Permanent Representative to the UN Dr. Bashar al-Jaafari has renewed that continuing to impose unilateral coercive measures on Syria and a number of states is a dangerous gap in the structure of the global solidarity which is needed for enhancing the capabilities of the states equally, affirming that the economic siege affects the lives of two billion people and hinder the efforts of combating the coronavirus and the achievement of sustainable development which entails lifting those measures.

Al-Jaafari’s remarks came during a videoconference held at the UN headquarters in New York at an initiative by a number of states, on top Syria, Venezuela, Russia, China, Iran, Cuba, Zimbabwe and Belarus under the title “impact of unilateral coercive measures on global solidarity in confrontation of Covid-19 and the necessity to adhere to the UN Charter and enhancing international cooperation, and guaranteeing that no one is left behind”

Al-Jaafari added that the US and the EU still ignore the UN and international calls by the UN Secretary-General and many regional and international organizations and bodies for putting an end to these illegitimate economic sanctions.

He noted that few days ago, the EU has renewed the effectiveness of the economic blockade which it imposes on the Syrian people, in addition to imposing new coercive measures by the US that aims at usurping the decision of the Syrian people and their aspirations towards achieving security, stability and prosperity.

Al-Jaafari asserted that the US and European allegations regarding the existence of licenses and exceptions to these sanctions that allow the provision of food and medical supplies to the Syrian people, noting that these allegations are an irresponsible attempt to mislead the international public opinion and to cover up the crimes and violations of these parties against the sovereignty, safety and territorial integrity of the Syrian Arab Republic and against the security, stability and prosperity of all the Syrians.

Al-Jaafari indicated that Syria has sent more than ten messages to the Secretary-General, President of the General Assembly and President of the Security Council during the past three months that included accurate information and statistics about the extreme impact of these sanctions on the economic, agricultural, investment, banking and service sectors in Syria which, adding that those sanctions have been accompanied with the economic terrorism practiced by the US and the EU in particular against any foreign party that seeks to enter the Syrian markets and to participate in the reconstruction.

He referred to the systematic policy adopted by these governments, which is based on preventing the United Nations development system from launching the process of reconstruction in Syria after a decade-long terrorist war.

Al-Jaafari pointed out that the outcomes of this videoconference will constitute an important contribution in drawing the attention of the international community towards the deep negative impacts of unilateral coercive measures on global solidarity in the face of Covid-19 and that it will raise the alarm again about the ineffectiveness of the global multilateral system and the inability of the United Nations to put an end to this economic blockade that affects the lives of two billion people and impedes the achievement of sustainable development and its goal of no one being left behind.

In response to the allegations of delegates of Western countries that are involved in imposing coercive unilateral measures on some peoples of the world and the attempts of EU representatives to defend these economic sanctions by saying that they are consistent with international law and aim to protect human rights, al-Jaafari indicated that the Syrian banking system is completely restricted from making any external financial transfers due to the illegal sanctions imposed by the EU and the US and that the EU banks have laid their hands on Syrian assets that were devoted to securing Syrian food and medicine.

He pointed out that the Syrian state is not able to rehabilitate the electrical power stations destroyed by the terrorist organizations of Daesh “ISIS” and al-Qaeda due to the sanctions imposed by the EU and the US on the Syrian people.

Al-Jaafari stressed that the governments of certain countries are still involved in supporting terrorism and spreading chaos and destruction in Syria and therefore they lack the legal and moral capacity to assess the situation in Syria or to desperately try to find a legal framework that has no basis for imposing EU sanctions on the Syrian people.

Most of the discussions focused on refuting any legal, political or humanitarian basis claimed by the governments of countries that adopt a policy of unilateral sanctions, as the United Nations representatives explained the great impact of this type of punitive measures on human rights and the ability of states in the region to meet the daily humanitarian needs of their citizens, especially in emergency situations such as the current situation which the world is witnessing today due to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus.

The participants emphasized that unilateral coercive measures are a serious gap in the global solidarity that is supposed to protect all the peoples of the world without exception as these measures have weakened the health infrastructure of a number of countries by restricting access to the global financial, commercial and banking system and to foreign currencies and restricting the ability to importing the main medical materials and equipment, in addition to undermining the ability of governments and national public and private institutions in a number of countries to cope with the economic and social impacts resulting from the outbreak of the pandemic.

The participants in the videoconference called for considering a set of options available to counter the effects of these illegal punitive measures or to reduce them, particularly resorting to the International Court of Justice by the governments of the affected states to obtain an advisory opinion on the illegitimacy of these unilateral policies or resorting to the United Nations General Assembly in order to study options to deal with the rejection of the US and EU to respond to repeated international and UN calls to put an end to the imposition of unilateral coercive measures on a number of peoples of the world in light of the outbreak of Covid-19 pandemic.

Ruaa al-Jazaeri

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