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UAE calls for strengthening international efforts to protect civilians in armed conflict areas

posted on 12/05/2011: 1211 views

The United Arab Emirates before the UN Security Council meeting last night has called to strengthen the international efforts to protect civilians in armed conflict areas, especially the Palestinian and Libyan people confirming the continuation of its support and participation in the efforts of the United Nations.

Ambassador Ahmed Abdul Rahman Al Jarman, UAE's permanent representative to the United Nations in his statement before the Special Meeting of UN Security Council on "protection of civilians in armed conflict" expressed UAE concerns on difficult humanitarian conditions experienced by some people in the region as a result of the rapid changes taking place in their area recently.

Full text of his speech: The United Arab Emirates, which reiterates its strong condemnation of the tragic and serious crimes committed against peaceful civilians, especially women, children and humanitarian and media workers in areas of armed conflict, wishes to emphasise that the application of legal accountability and non-impunity system on those involved in these acts through fair trials and adequate punishment of perpetrators is a critical step on the way to developing the plans and efforts aimed at protecting people. We, therefore, call for the adoption and implementation of clear, comprehensive and achievable multilateral international and regional strategies, in order to support the objectives of political, security, legal and humanitarian programs and plans which are carried out by the United Nations in collaboration with other international and regional organisations with a view to protecting civilians in armed conflict and in crisis areas in accordance with the Council resolution 1674 (2006).

We also reaffirm that the implementation of international and regional multilateral protective measures must be based on the principles of neutrality, justice and objectivity, particularly in the area of providing and coordinating adequate relief and humanitarian assistance and the protection of such assistance and its humanitarian corridors, in order to ensure that it reaches affected people in a timely manner and alleviates their suffering. At the same time, we stress the need for untying the plans and programs of these strategies with the conflict resolution process, in conformity with the rules of international law.

The UAE played a distinctive and transparent role in supporting efforts aimed at protecting civilians in conflict areas and was among the first states to participate in international humanitarian operations and made effective contributions, including the provision of various types of humanitarian, relief and medical assistance to affected people in many conflict areas in the world, regardless of their affiliations or beliefs. The latest of these efforts is the intensive and continuing endeavour made by the UAE to alleviate the humanitarian crisis in Libya within the framework of Security Council resolution 1973 (2011).

In this regard, while the UAE supports the efforts of the United Nations aimed at addressing the critical humanitarian situation facing the Libyan people, including protection of civilians, speed passage of humanitarian supplies and ensuring the safety of humanitarian workers, the UAE affirms its support for the legitimate aspirations of the Libyan people within the framework of an inclusive political process that would enable the Libyan people to determine their future and bring a lasting peace to their country. We also reaffirm our commitment to the sovereignty and independence of Libya and its territorial integrity and national unity. We will continue our cooperation with these international efforts to ensure the protection of civilians in Libya and their access to humanitarian assistance in accordance with Security Council resolutions 1970 (2011) and 1973 (2011).

In this context, we also call for taking the necessary measures to protect the Palestinian civilians from the collective punishment measures and daily excessive violent actions committed by Israel, the Occupying Power, against the Palestinian civilians in their territories. These measures must include exerting the necessary pressure upon Israel to remove its inhuman and illegal blockade on the Gaza Strip in order to ensure that adequate humanitarian supplies, including basic construction materials, are delivered to the people of the Gaza Strip to enable them to rebuild and rehabilitate their institutions, which have been destroyed by Israeli wars since 2006.

We call for intensifying the exchange of information, monitoring and reporting of crimes against humanity in armed conflicts, and strengthening the system of non-impunity for those responsible for these crimes in order to ensure that such crimes are not repeated. We also call for promoting the functioning of specialised judicial proceedings addressing such crimes, and developing the national and international capacities in the areas of verification and prosecution.

In conclusion, as part of its commitment to the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the UAE will continue its active participation and support to various humanitarian programs and operations of peacekeeping, reconstruction, rehabilitation and mine clearance in many conflict-affected areas in order to alleviate the suffering of their people. We hope that the deliberations of the Security Council yesterday, under this item, will contribute to strengthening and coordinating international, regional and national efforts aimed at protecting civilians in armed conflict and violent crisis, and in developing the tools and applications used in this regard. - Emirates News Agency, WAM


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