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SYRIA: A Reaction Paper

What we see and hear in the news today is only part, and
probably the result of four years of failure to protect Syria.
Yes, it took us four years to realize how deadly the conflict has
been. To date, according to reports, about 4 million people have
fled Syria and about 7.6 million have been internally displaced
from their homes, bringing the total number forced to flee their
homes to 11.6 million- half of their countrys population. Around
200,000 people died due to the armed conflict and due to the said
displacement.
The United Nations adopted the commitment on Responsibility
to

Protect.

resolutions

For
to

materialized.
conflict,

the

past

control

the

Resolutions

unless

it

was

years,
deadly

will

never

it

continuously

situation
be

implemented.

but

enough
The

passed

such

to

never

solve

failure

to

the
end

atrocities and to protect civilians in Syria is not the failure


of the Responsibility to Protect alone, but of the imperfections
of the actors charged with the implementation of the same. Beyond
the responsibility of the Syria government to stop killing its
own people, the responsibility rests with the one body entrusted
and

mandated

by

193

members

of

the

United

Nations

with

the

maintenance of international peace and security the Security


Council.
Despite the rise of death tolls in Syria, the Security
failed to act promptly on the matter. We should not see the
council as the body of rules alone but of actions too. Until they
put the rules to actions, the situation will never end.
Both the Syrian government and the armed opposition groups
are committing war crimes. Syrian government forces have used

aircraft,

tanks,

heavy

artillery

and

cluster

munitions

to

terrorize and kill anyone presumed to be supporting the regimes


opponents, including civilians living in opposition-controlled
areas. On the ground government troops and allied militias have
conducted massacres of unarmed civilians. The rebels, on the
other

hand,

commits

deadly

reprisals

against

minority

communities, defilement and destruction of religious sites and


extrajudicial execution of captured government soldiers. All of
these acts were condemned by the international community.
Despite knowledge and realization of these events, United
Nations, particularly the Security Council cannot act positively
on the matter despite efforts. Given for example the Security
Councils plan to suppress the chemical weapons of both parties,
member states clashed and opposed each other when China and
Russia opposed the banning of such weapons while United States of
America along with other countries encourage said efforts.
Far from external interference by the Security Council, the
absence of timely and decisive action has exacerbated Syrias
conflict. With or without unity of the council members, Security
Council must still be obliged by its responsibilities to help end
war crimes and crimes against humanity. In this way, the crisis
in Syria may be controlled, the numbers of affected people will
no

longer

rise,

and

many

civilians

will

be

saved

from

sure

suffering.

ALYZZA MAE S. ORA


LLB III