UN Syria envoy expresses concern over increased violence in Syria
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – United Nations Special Envoy for Syria Geir O. Pedersen on Thursday expressed grave concerns over escalating violence in Syria today.
"I am deeply concerned by the alarming reports of a drone attack on the graduation ceremony of a military academy in Homs, which the Government attributed to terrorist organizations and which reportedly caused many dozens of casualties, including civilians and children too," he said.
Moreover, he said he was concerned by reports of escalating pro-Government shelling and rocket fire into Idlib in the aftermath of the attack in Homs, with reports of civilian casualties and strikes on civilian infrastructure.
This came against the backdrop of weeks of significant escalation in northwest Syria, with pro-Government airstrikes and also attacks by Security Council-listed terrorist group Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS).
Furthermore, he said there are concerning reports today of escalating violence in northeast Syria, with reports of Turkish strikes, including on civilian infrastructure and reports of casualties.
"This escalation came on the back of an attack on Turkish Government facilities in Ankara, claimed by the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK)," he said.
"I deeply deplore the loss of life on all sides. I urgently appeal to all sides to exercise the utmost restraint. Today’s horrific scenes are a reminder of the need to immediately de-escalate violence, towards a nationwide ceasefire," he concluded.
He also added that all sides must respect their obligations under international law and ensure the protection of civilians and civilian infrastructure.