Press Releases

PRESS RELEASE : UN HRC54 – Joint Statement on Syria [September 2023]

The press release issued by the Foreign Office on 22 September 2023.

Joint Statement for the Interactive Dialogue with UN Commission of Inquiry on Syria, as delivered by the UK’s Ambassador to the WTO and UN, Simon Manley.

Mr President,

This statement is made on behalf of a cross regional group of 53 countries.

We support the important work of the Commissioners and the role they play together with the International, Impartial and Independent Mechanism, in ensuring accountability for the ongoing serious violations of international law in Syria.

We are alarmed by the increase in hostilities resulting in civilian casualties, and by the absence of a long-term solution to ensuring the uninterrupted delivery of humanitarian aid to all those in need, and call on all parties to facilitate immediate and unhindered humanitarian assistance.

We note with concern, and condemn, the persistence of arbitrary arrests, enforced disappearances, torture and deaths in detention, including for returnees. We demand that the Syrian authorities cease these violations, ensure the protection of civilians, respect the rights to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly without discrimination. We urge them to engage, in good faith, with the Independent Institution on Missing Persons.

We recall the Commissioners’ findings that Syria does not yet offer a safe and stable environment for returns, and support UNHCR’s call for to the Syrian authorities to create this.

Mr President,

Recent protests demonstrate the despair, and continued bravery, of the Syrian people and we urge Damascus to acknowledge their legitimate demands.

We support all efforts to progress the political process and urge the Syrian authorities, and all parties, to engage meaningfully and, in good faith, to advance all aspects of Security Council resolution 2254.

Joint Statement by the United Kingdom on behalf of 53 countries:

Albania, Andorra, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Estonia, France, Finland, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Marshall Islands, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, New Zealand, North Macedonia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, ROK, Romania, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, UK, Ukraine, USA,