Uniting for Peace: Global Civil Society Appeal to UN Member States 

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Statement signed by 223 NGOs from 45 countries

The UN Security Council has failed Syrians. In almost six years of conflict, close to half a million people have been killed and eleven million have been forced to leave their homes. Most recently, the Syrian and Russian governments and their allies have carried out unlawful attacks on eastern Aleppo with scant regard for some 250,000 civilians trapped there.

Armed opposition groups have also fired mortars and other projectiles into civilian neighbourhoods of western Aleppo, though according to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, “indiscriminate airstrikes across the eastern part of the city by Government forces and their allies are responsible for the overwhelming majority of civilian casualties.” Efforts to stop these atrocities and hold those responsible to account have been blocked repeatedly by Russia, which continues to misuse its veto power in the Security Council.

The UN’s special envoy to Syria, Staffan de Mistura, has warned that the UN must not allow “another Srebrenica, another Rwanda, which we are sadly ready to recognize written on that wall in front of us, unless something takes place.” Yet, there is no sign that the Security Council deadlock will end anytime soon. The guardian of international peace and security has failed to fulfill its task under the UN Charter and has failed to uphold its responsibility to protect the Syrian people.

This is why we, a global coalition of 223 civil society organizations, urgently call upon UN member states to step in and request an Emergency Special Session of the UN General Assembly to demand an end to all unlawful attacks in Aleppo and elsewhere in Syria, and immediate and unhindered humanitarian access so that life-saving aid can reach all those in need. Member states should also explore possible avenues to bring perpetrators of serious crimes under international law on all sides to justice.

We welcome Canada’s leadership in seeking UN General Assembly action and we strongly urge all Member States to join the 73 countries from all regions by endorsing their initiative. These countries should work toward an Emergency Special Session of the General Assembly at the earliest opportunity, as UN member states have done in the past when the Security Council was deadlocked.

We call in particular upon the 112 supporters of the Accountability, Coherence and Transparency (ACT) Code of Conduct, which includes a pledge to support “timely and decisive action” aimed at preventing or ending the commission of genocide, crimes against humanity or war crimes, to join this effort and actively promote meaningful action through the UN General Assembly.

Inaction should not be an option. UN member states should use all the diplomatic tools at their disposal to stop the atrocities and protect the millions of civilians in Syria. History will judge harshly those that fail to step up.

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  • Co-signatories

    1. ABBAD
    2. Abrar Halap Association for Relief and Development*
    3. ActionAid International
    4. Action des Chrétiens pour l’Abolition de la Torture (ACAT)
    5. Afghanistan Global Civil Society Consortium (AGCSC)
    6. Africa Atrocities Watch
    7. African Centre for Transitional Justice (ACT-J)
    8. African Youth Initiative Network (AYINET)
    9. Ahl Horan*
    10. Alkawakibi Organisation for Human Rights
    11. Al Seeraj For Development And Healthcare*
    12. Amnesty International
    13. Amrha*
    14. Antiwar Committee in Solidarity with the Struggle for Self-Determination
    15. Arab Human Rights Organization - Libya
    16. Arab Program for Human Rights Activists (APHRA)
    17. Asia Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA)
    18. Assistance Mission for Africa (AMA)
    19. Associação Brasileira de Organizações Não Governamentais (Brazilian Association of NGOs)
    20. Association For Promotion Sustainable Development, India
    21. Association Medina
    22. Assyrian Human Rights Network (AHRN)
    23. Association de Soutien aux Médias Libres (ASML)
    24. Attaa for Relief and Development (ARD)*
    25. Attaa Association*
    26. Avaaz
    27. Badayl-Goa
    28. Badhon Human Development Organization (Badhon Manob Unnayan Sangstha)
    29. Balad Syria Organization*
    30. Basmeh & Zeitooneh For Relief and Development
    31. Basmet Amal Charity*
    32. Baytna Syria
    33. Big Heart Foundation
    34. Bihar Relief Organization*
    35. BINAA for Development
    36. Bonyan*
    37. Bridge of Peace
    38. Broederlijk Delen
    39. Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies (CIHRS)
    40. Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace
    41. Canadian Council for International Co-operation (CCIC)
    42. Canadian Labour Congress (CLC)
    43. CARE International
    44. Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP)
    45. Center for Civilians in Conflict (CIVIC)
    46. Center for the Development of International Law (CDIL)
    47. Center for Conflict Resolution (CECORE)
    48. Christian Aid UK
    49. Coalition for the International Criminal Court (CICC)
    50. Collectif pour une Syrie Libre et Démocratique
    51. Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI)
    52. Concern Worldwide
    53. Conectas Human Rights
    54. Control Arms Foundation of India
    55. Council for Arab-British Understanding (Caabu)
    56. CCFD-Terre Solidaire
    57. Damascene House Foundation for Society Development*
    58. Deir Elzzor United Association - FURAT*
    59. Democratic Republic Studies Center
    60. Doctors of the World UK
    61. East African Civil Society Organisations’ Forum (EACSOF)
    62. Economic Justice Network Sierra Leone
    63. Education without borders - MIDAD*
    64. Emaar AL Sham Humanitarian Association*
    65. Emissa for Development
    66. End Impunity Organization (EIO)
    67. Enjaz Development foundation*
    68. Equitas
    69. EuroMed Rights (Euro-Mediterranean Network for Human Rights)
    70. Foundation for Democracy and Accountable Governance (FODAG)
    71. Fraternity Foundation for Human Rights
    72. Fundación Jóvenes y Desarrollo
    73. Ghiath Matar Foundation*
    74. Ghiras Al Nahda*
    75. Ghiras Foundation for Child Care
    76. Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect
    77. GOAL
    78. Greater Upper Nile, Bahr el Ghazal & Equatoria Youth Association (GUBEYA)
    79. Halina Niec Legal Aid Centre (HNLAC)
    80. Hand In Hand For Syria
    81. Help 4Syria
    82. Helsinki Committee for Human Rights of the Republic of Macedonia (MHC)
    83. Humanitarian Relief Association - IYD*
    84. Human Appeal
    85. Human Care Syria
    86. Human Rights Documentation Organization (HURIDO)
    87. Human Rights First Society - Saudi Arabia
    88. Human Rights Now (HRN)
    89. Human Rights Watch (HRW)
    90. Hungarian Helsinki Committee
    91. Instituto Brasileiro de Analises Sociais e Economicas (IBASE)
    92. ICJ Kenya
    93. IHH Humantiarian Relief Foundation
    94. Independent Doctors Association (IDA)
    95. Insan for Psychosocial Support*
    96. Instituto de Estudos Socioeconômicos (INESC)
    97. Institute for Promotion of Civil Society (IPCS)
    98. Instituto Igarapé
    99. Intercultural Resources
    100. International Alert
    101. International Association of World Peace Advocates
    102. International Center for Policy and Conflict (ICPC)
    103. International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH)
    104. International Humanitarian Relief*
    105. International Rescue Committee (IRC)
    106. International Service for Human Rights (ISHR)
    107. International Supporting Woman Association - ISWA*
    108. International Youth For Africa (IYA)
    109. Irtiqaa Foundation*
    110. Jonglei Development Agency (JODA)
    111. Jugend Eine Welt – Don Bosco Aktion Österreich
    112. Karam Foundation
    113. Kesh Malek
    114. KHOJ
    115. Latvian Platform for Development Cooperation (LAPAS)
    116. Maram Foundation for Relief & Development*
    117. Médecins du Monde France
    118. Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP)
    119. Middle East and North Africa Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (MENAPPAC)
    120. Misiones Salesianas
    121. Mother of Hope Cameroon (MOHCAM)
    122. Mountain Foundation*
    123. Najda now*
    124. Nasaem Khair*
    126. Non C’è Pace Senza Giustizia (No Peace Without Justice)
    127. Norwegian Church Aid
    128. Nuon Organization for Peace-Building
    129. Ohaha Family Foundation (OFF)
    130. Organization for Non-violence and Development (ONAD)
    131. Orient for Human Relief*
    132. Oxfam
    133. Pan African Lawyers Union (PALU)
    134. PAX
    135. Pax Christi Flanders
    136. Peace and Development Collaborative Organization (PDCO)
    137. People in Need (PIN)
    138. People’s Action For Rural Awakening (PARA)
    139. People’s Empowerment Foundation (PEF)
    140. Permanent Peace Movement (PPM)
    141. Physicians for Human Rights (PHR)
    142. Protection Approaches
    143. Qitaf Al Khair Relief Association*
    144. Quaker Peace and Social Witness
    145. Radanar Ayar Rural Development Association
    146. Relief International
    147. Relief & Reconciliation for Syria
    148. Rethink Rebuild Society
    149. Revivre
    150. Rideau Institute
    151. Rwanda Green Initiative
    152. Saed Charity Association*
    153. Sanayee Development Organization (SDO)
    154. Save A Soul*
    155. Save the Children
    156. Sedra Association For Charity*
    157. Shama Association*
    158. Shaml Coalition
    159. Snabel Al Khyr*
    160. Solidarity Ministries Africa for Reconciliation & Development (SMARD)
    161. Souria Houria
    162. South Solidarity Initiative
    163. South Sudan Action Network on Small Arms (SSANSA)
    164. South Sudan Christian Community Agency (SSCCA)
    165. South Sudan Human Rights Society for Advocacy (SSHURSA)
    166. South Sudan Law Society (SSLS)
    167. South Sudan Youth Peace and Development Organization (SSYPADO)
    168. South Sudanese Diaspora Civil Society Network (SSDCSN)
    169. Sri Lanka-United Nations Friendship Organisation (SUNFO)
    170. STAND
    171. Stichting Vluchteling (Netherlands Refugee Foundation)
    172. SUDO (UK)
    173. Syria Charity
    174. Syria NGO Alliance
    175. Syria Relief*
    176. Syria Relief and Development (SRD)
    177. Syria Relief Network (SRN)
    178. Syria Relief Organization*
    179. Syrian American Council
    180. Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS)
    181. Syrian Center For Legal Studies and Research
    182. Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression (SCM)
    183. Syrian Center for Statistics and Research (CSR-SY)
    184. Syrian Education Commission - SEC*
    185. Syrian Engineers For Construction and Development Organization - SECD*
    186. Syrian Expatriate Medical Association - SEMA*
    187. Syrian Institute for Justice
    188. Syrian League for Citizenship
    189. Syrian Medical Mission*
    190. Syrian Network for Human Rights
    191. Syrian Orphans Organization*
    192. Syrians for Truth and Justice (STJ)
    193. Takaful Al Sham Charity Organization*
    194. Tearfund
    195. The Center for Victims of Torture (CVT)
    196. The Commission for Disappearances and Victims of Violence (KontraS)
    197. The Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies (MIGS)
    198. The Red Elephant Foundation
    199. The Syria Campaign
    200. The Syrian Establishment for Human Care & Enhancement – MASRRAT*
    201. The Violations Documentation Center in Syria (VDC)
    202. Trócaire‎
    203. Tuba Dernegi*
    204. Unified Revolutionary Medical Bureau in East Gouta*
    205. Union Of Syrians Abroad*
    206. URNAMMU
    207. Vision GRAM-International
    208. Voice for Change (VFC)
    209. War Child
    210. White Hands - Beyaz Eller*
    211. Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF)
    212. Women Monthly Forum
    213. World Federalist Movement–Institute for Global Policy (WFM-IGP)
    214. World Renew
    215. World Vision
    216. Youth Forum on Foreign Policy
    217. Youth for Peace and Development
    218. Youth in Action Balochistan
    219. Youth in Action Nepal
    220. Yuwalaya
    221. Zimbabwe Human Rights Association (ZimRights)
    222. Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum
    223. 11.11.11

    *These organizations are members of the Syria Relief Network (SRN), an umbrella organization of Syrian humanitarian NGOs working inside Syria and neighboring countries to provide relief to Syrians in need of assistance.

  • Member organisations - Syria
    vignette contact

    12438 Majdal Shams - Golan Heights, via Israel
    +972 4 687 0644
    vignette contact
    +00 963 43723670
    +00 963 43723670
    vignette contact
    +00963 11 621 53 97
    +00963 95 84 6615

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