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UNSC adopts 97-nation Swiss resolution, including Pakistan, slams attacks on UN and aid workers, demands safety

UNITED NATIONS, May 25 (APP): The United Nations Security Council has strongly condemned rising attacks on humanitarian workers and UN personnel, urging all conflict parties to ensure their safety and access.

The resolution 2730 (2024) was adopted with a vote of 14 to one — Russia abstained.

The 15-member Council also denounced disinformation, information manipulation and incitement to violence against humanitarian and UN personnel.

Led by Switzerland and co-sponsored by over 97 nations, including Pakistan, the resolution noted “deep concern” about the particular vulnerability of national and locally recruited personnel who account for the majority of safety and security incidents.

The Security Council emphasized the need for “concerted efforts and concrete risk mitigation strategies” to enhance the safety and security of these workers.

The resolution does not single out any conflict, even as Israeli attacks continue in Gaza, and battles rage in Ukraine, Sudan, Myanmar, among other hotspots.

The war in Gaza alone has claimed the lives of over 224 humanitarian workers, including over 190 UNRWA (the UN agency assisting Palestine refugees) and other UN agencies’ personnel.

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has called the death toll of U.N. staff in Gaza unprecedented in the world body’s nearly 80-year history.

U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric said it had been a “tragic year,” and welcomed the resolution, saying that member states should do all they can to implement it.

Riyad Mansour, the Palestinian U.N. ambassador, said Arab nations are grateful to Switzerland and told reporters the resolution “is tailored to Gaza, without necessarily mentioning Gaza by name.” That’s because it calls for protection of humanitarian and U.N. staff trying to help civilians, he said.

The war has also seen the killing of other humanitarian personnel, including seven World Central Kitchen workers who died in an Israeli airstrike last month.

Under its terms, the resolution also condemned disinformation, information manipulation, and incitement to violence against aid workers and UN personnel.

It encouraged Member States and the UN system “to take appropriate action to address the increasing threat of disinformation campaigns and misinformation that undermine trust in UN and humanitarian organizations”, put personnel at risk and hinder humanitarian activities.

Additionally, it urged States to conduct full, prompt, independent, impartial and effective investigations within their jurisdiction of violations of international humanitarian law and international human rights law committed against aid workers and UN and associated personnel.

The resolution requested the Secretary-General to “report swiftly” on widespread issues regarding the safety and security of humanitarians and UN personnel, their premises, and assets.

The Council expressed its intention to give full attention to such information when these situations are brought to its attention.

Also on Friday, the Security Council adopted a presidential statement acknowledging the challenging security situation in West Africa and the Sahel, including armed conflicts, the spread of terrorism and violent extremism, and transnational organized crime.

The Council expressed deep concern over the intensification of inter-communal violence, particularly in the central Sahel, and increased tensions and conflicts between farmers and herders in the region.

It also recognized the effects of climate change, ecological changes, natural disasters, and their impact on food security, society, the economy, and regional stability.

APP/ift

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