Mar 29, 2021, 11:40 PM
Journalist ID: 1843
News Code: 84278702
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Iran envoy: Sanctions prolong crisis in Syria

Tehran, March 29, IRNA – Iran's Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations Majid Takhat Ravanchi said sanctions have prolonged the ongoing crisis in Syria.

He made the remark in a statement read before the United Nations Security Council "on the situation in the Middle East, Syria on Monday.

Ravanchi said that "We have heard recently from the Secretary-General and other UN officials about the risk of hunger in Syria in 2021. This leaves no doubt about the necessity and urgency of mobilizing international assistance to address this critical challenge.

While providing food and other humanitarian assistance to the people in need is necessary and must be pursued as a high priority, in the long run, it cannot by itself resolve the problem.

However important, providing humanitarian assistance can, in no way, substitute for fundamental measures that need to be taken in order to ensure durable peace, security and stability in the country.

The first and foremost of such acts is ensuring Syria’s full sovereignty and territorial integrity through uprooting all terrorists, withdrawing uninvited foreign forces, ending the occupation, and securing its borders.

Furthermore, necessary measures must be taken for reconstruction of the country’s critical infrastructure, further improving the conditions conducive for the return of all refugees and internally displaced persons, as well as stimulating further progress in the political process.

We cannot overemphasize that there is no military solution to this conflict. It must be settled peacefully and in full conformity with international law. At the same time, a political solution can neither be achieved in isolation or overnight nor must progress in that domain be considered as a precondition for assisting to make progress in other areas.

Politicizing humanitarian aids and return of refugees and internally displaced persons or imposing unilateral sanctions are counterproductive, as they only prolong both the crisis and griefs of the Syrian people who are already suffering seriously from other hardships, particularly the COVID-19 pandemic.

While ten years of conflict has negatively impacted Syria’s economic condition, the destructive effects of unilateral sanctions in further worsening the economic situation of the country are self-explanatory.

It has now become quite obvious that certain countries have intended to achieve, through imposing sanctions, the objectives that they have failed to gain by military means or political leverage. By imposing sanctions, these countries are punishing the entire Syrian nation, adding insult to the injury of the most vulnerable segments of the society.

No State shall use economic, political or any other type of measures, including unilateral sanctions, to coerce another State. Weaponizing food and medicine and endangering the food security of a nation are unjust and unacceptable, and the so-called humanitarian exemptions are not panaceas, as in practice, they do not work within the vast and sophisticated sanctions web.

As a tool for collective punishment of entire nations, unilateral sanctions are flagrant violations of the purposes and principles of the United Nations and must therefore be removed immediately.

We once again call for the mobilization of international assistance to address the current humanitarian situation in Syria while stressing that its long-term solution is to work toward ending the conflict, ensuring Syria’s full sovereignty and territorial integrity, removing unilateral sanctions, and avoiding politicization of humanitarian issues such as reconstruction and return of refugees and internally displaced persons.

In its turn, Iran is committed to political resolution of this crisis and will continue supporting a truly Syrian-led, Syrian-owned, UN-facilitated political process, as well as assisting the people and Government of Syria to restore the unity and territorial integrity of their country"

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