Security Council reiterates protection of civilians in armed conflicts - The UN Security Council on Wednesday stressed the need for greater protection for the countless men, women and children caught in the crossfire of war, noting that civilians are routinely targeted and subjected to indiscriminate brutality in conflicts.
PANA in New York, reports that the Council made the call in a statement issued following an open debate on the release of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s recent report on protection of civilians in armed conflicts.
It called for more action to protect desperate civilians, as well as examine the core challenges the international community faces, from enhancing compliance with civilian protection regimes by non-State actors to improving humanitarian access to people in need.
The Council reaffirmed its commitment to its range of civilian protection measures approved since 1999, and also reaffirmed that parties to armed conflict bore the primary responsibility to take all feasible steps to ensure the protection of affected civilians.
It also urged such conflict parties to meet the 'basic needs, and give attention to the specific needs of women and children, refugees, internally displaced persons, as well as other civilians who may have specific vulnerabilities'.
The day-long debate featured briefings by Mr. Herve Ladsous, UN Under Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, Ms. Navi Pillay, High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms. Valerie Amos, UN Under Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Mr. Yves Daccord, Director-General of the International Committee of the Red Cross.
Also, the 15 Council members as well as diplomats from among the wider UN membership
participated in the meeting, with all of them calling for more protection for civilians and adherence to international laws to ensure unfettered access for humanitarian workers.