Qatar for comprehensive solution to Syria crisis
23 Sep 2017 - 1:40
Foreign Minister H E Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani has said that any transition or solution in Syria, without accountability for those involved in the commission of violations and war crimes, will not lead to an effective and sustainable outcome.
Addressing the high-level meeting on accountability in Syria held on the sidelines of the 72nd session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, the Foreign Minister said that some six years since the beginning of the crisis left no doubt that the national judicial system in Syria is unable or has no desire to prosecute any party that committed any of the crimes of brutality in Syria. He pointed to the failure of the international community to refer the Syrian file on these crimes, namely war crimes and crimes against humanity, to the International Criminal Court.
From this perspective the efforts of the State of Qatar came in partnership with the group of friends of accountability to address the UN General Assembly for the establishment of a neutral and independent international mechanism to assist in the investigation and the prosecution of those responsible for the most serious crimes, the Minister said.
Qatar called for a comprehensive political solution to the Syrian crisis, supported initiatives to stop violence, supported international efforts to prevent terrorism and extremism and expressed concern and condemnation of the use of chemical weapons, he added pointing that the Syrian crisis has many aspects that have received the attention of the international community.
The Foreign Minister said that Qatar has made every effort to provide assistance to address the enormous humanitarian needs of the Syrian people, noting that Qatar has always stressed the importance of stopping serious violations of human rights.
The Foreign Minister expressed Qatar’s desire to work seriously to ensure the proper and effective operation of the new mechanism, as well as to activate coordination and cooperation between the UN’s independent international mechanism and the International Commission of Inquiry. “We are certain that the day when the civilised world will be held accountable for its silence since the beginning of this crisis is not far away,” he said.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani said that the report of the International Independent Investigation Commission issued this month has confirmed the responsibility of the Syrian regime forces for the use of chemical weapons in Khan Sheikun incident, which took place in April.
The Foreign Minister said that international conferences held to support Syria in Kuwait, London and finally the Brussels conference, in which Qatar has participated, witnessed the announcement of large pledges by different countries, but the benefit from those pledges can only be realised by fulfilling them.
Addressing the ministerial meeting on the Syrian crisis held by the European Union on the sidelines of the 72nd session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, the Foreign Minister said that raising funds and aid is of no use, unless aid is delivered to the right beneficiaries.
The international community must therefore intensify its efforts to ensure the delivery of humanitarian assistance, as confirmed by Security Council resolutions related to the humanitarian situation in Syria, he added.
He pointed out that since the beginning of the crisis, the State of Qatar has spared no effort in providing humanitarian assistance to the Syrian people, adding that at the Brussels Conference Qatar pledged to provide $100m, and so far it has fulfilled most of the pledges made at both Brussels and London conferences.
“This is only a fraction of the total $1.6bn in financial and in-kind assistance provided by Qatar through government support and Qatari charities to alleviate the suffering of the Syrian people in Syria and in the neighbouring countries,” he said, extending thanks to Syria’s neighbours and urging the international community to continue supporting them to bear this massive burden.
The Foreign Minister pointed that “.... the State of Qatar has taken initiatives in education and professional development in partnership with humanitarian and regional organisations, including the Syrian Refugee Education and Training Initiative for 400,000 beneficiaries over five years and the (Educate a Child) initiative, which has served about 985,000 children in addition to the activities of Qatari civil society organizations and reuniting thousands of Syrians with their families residing in Qatar.”