The intensification in hostilities in northwest Syria is worsening the suffering of children who are already deeply affected by more than nine years of war, warned the Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) for Children and Armed Conflict, Ms. Virginia Gamba.

Over recent weeks, the civilian population in northwest Syria has been caught amidst heavy fighting between warring parties, including indiscriminate attacks on civilians. Children in the areas of southern Idlib and northern Hama have been particularly exposed, resulting in the displacement of thousands of civilians due to the volatile security situation.

SRSG Gamba urged all parties to ensure protection of children at all times and to respect the basic humanitarian principles of distinction and proportionality in the conduct of hostilities, as well as avoiding superfluous injury and unnecessary suffering. “For almost a decade, children in Syria have borne the brunt of hostilities. For many, it’s the only reality they’ve ever known.”

“I call on all parties and those who can influence them to work towards a political solution, including on a lasting ceasefire that would include children’s needs and to provide unimpeded access for humanitarian actors to children in need”, SRSG Gamba said. Since the outbreak of violence, the United Nations and its partners are facing dire conditions, hampering the delivery of life-saving aid to thousands of people in need.


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