Ambassador Ala: Partner countries in the war on Syria moved to the stage of economic terrorism issuing what is called the “Caesar Act”

Geneva, (ST) - Syria reaffirmed its warning about the repercussions of expanding and extending unilateral coercive measures imposed on it by the US and the European Union in light of the measures taken to confront the outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic, stressing that these measures constitute a new phase of economic terrorism.

The permanent representative of Syria to the United Nations in Geneva, Hussam Eddin Ala, in a statement at the United Nations’ Human Rights Council on Tuesday, criticized America’s resort to unilateral, coercive measures thus increasing the number of countries targeted by these measures.

Ambassador Ala stressed that the European Union’s decision to extend the unilateral, coercive measures on Syria for an additional year during the corona crisis and the United States’ step, at the same time, to issue the so-called “Caesar Act “, have moved the partner states in the war on Syria to a new stage of economic terrorism which aims at  hindering  the Syrian government’s efforts of reconstruction, stability and providing conditions for the return of the displaced Syrians inside and abroad.

Working upon an initiative by Syria, several UN member countries called on the Human Rights Council to exert pressure on the states that resort to imposing unilateral, coercive measures and oblige them respond to international appeals by the High Commissioner for Human Rights to lift these illegal measures in order to enable the targeted countries to face coronavirus pandemic and its economic and social consequences.

Meanwhile, Ambassador Ala, in a statement, on behalf of a group of states, including Russia, China, Iran, Venezuela, Cuba, Cambodia, the DPRK, Myanmar, Nicaragua and Zimbabwe in addition to Syria, warned against the negative impacts of the coercive measures, financial and economic sanctions and their violation of the basic rights of citizens of the targeted countries in light of Covid 19 pandemic.

The statement affirmed that the restrictions imposed on securing humanitarian needs and basic materials, like medical equipment and food, contradict international law and conventions relevant to human rights.

The statement denounced the reluctance of the concerned countries to respond to international calls in order to strengthen solidarity to confront the pandemic. It also denounced the continuation of coercive measures that harm the efforts of economic and social development in the targeted developing countries and their ability to confront the pandemic, protect their citizens and limit the ability of international organizations to provide humanitarian assistance to these countries.

Ambassador Ala described US and European allegations about the existence of “humanitarian exceptions” regarding the sanctions as nothing but a mere pretext to cover up the immoral measures that target the livelihood conditions of the Syrians and affect the work of humanitarian organizations and agencies operating inside Syria.

The ambassador called on the Human Rights’ Council to hold countries concerned in imposing unilateral coercive measures the moral and legal responsibility resulting from their impacts.

Raghda Sawas