Ashton: Syria must remain at the centre of world attention

The situation in Syria must remain at the centre of the world's attention and “every possible lever must be pulled to stop the violence and the killing of civilians”, EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said today in a statement welcoming the UN Human Rights Council’s urgent debate on Syria and the resolution just adopted.
She said the international community was sending “yet another unequivocal call to the Syrian authorities to stop human rights violations against its population and to address urgent humanitarian needs” and added: “In this context I am extremely disappointed that the Syrian authorities refused to grant access to the UN Under-Secretary-General and Emergency Relief Coordinator Valerie Amos and urge the Syrian Government to give her immediate access to the country.”
Ashton said the EU appreciated the efforts of Turkey and the Arab countries in tabling the resolution at the Human Rights Council, which was cosponsored by all EU member states, and which enjoyed strong cross-regional support.
The High Representative for foreign affairs said the EU remained fully engaged in collective efforts to stop the bloodshed and had just reinforced restrictive measures against the Syrian regime. “The message must be clear,” Ashton said: “There will be no impunity for perpetrators of these grave human rights violations, which, according to the Independent International Commission of Inquiry, may amount to crimes against humanity; the perpetrators will be held to account.” (ENPI Info Centre)
Read more
Ashton statement
ENPI Info Centre – Council tightens restrictive measures against the Syrian regime (27-02-12)
European External Action Service – Frequently Asked Questions on EU restrictive measures against the Syrian regime
ENPI Info Centre webpage – Syria

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