Briefing on behalf of the UN chief, Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed, painted a grim representation of civilian executions, arbitrary arrests, detentions, forced displacement and sexual unit against children, on a monolithic scale, in the Tigray region of Ethiopia.
She also spoke of “brutal attacks” successful Afghanistan, Syria and Yemen, where 20 cardinal people are living “face-to-face” with hunger.
“We are in uncharted waters”, she said, with the “sheer standard of humanitarian needs” never greater.
This year the UN and its partners are seeking to assist 160 million people – its highest number ever.
The “hurricane of humanitarian crises” is compounded by a “relentless wave of attacks” on humanitarian and medical workers, and the imposition of ever narrower constraints on humanitarian space, according to the lawman UN chief.
“The Secretary-General urges this Council to instrumentality strong and immediate action to support its numerous resolutions on the protection of civilians, humanitarian and healthcare workers, and humanitarian space”, she told ministers and ambassadors.
Surge in incidents
Shootings, bodily and intersexual assault, kidnappings and other attacks affecting humanitarian organizations, have accrued tenfold since 2001, according to Ms. Mohammed.
“In the 5 years since this Council’s landmark solution calling for an extremity to impunity for attacks connected healthcare systems, workers and patients person suffered thousands of attacks”, she said.
Meanwhile, it is becoming ever much hard to provide vital humanitarian aid to people successful need.
Some authorities impose restrictions on the movements of humanitarian unit and supplies, long visa and customs procedures and delays astatine checkpoints. Other obstacles include high taxes and fees on humanitarian supplies.
And while each country needs to act against terrorism, each also has a work to marque definite its counter-terrorism efforts bash not undermine humanitarian operations.
As Governments create systems around humanitarian aid delivery, the lawman chief reminded, “it is essential” that they support, rather than block aid.
Protect humanitarian space
And connected Thursday, the UN main issued a call for silencing the guns successful the tally up to the Olympic and Paralympic Games successful Tokyo: “People and nations tin physique connected this impermanent respite to found lasting ceasefires and find paths towards sustainable peace”, helium said.
“Turbo-charged” by COVID, humanitarian needs are outpacing the capacity to meet them, said Ms. Mohammed.
While the UN engages in hard negotiations to create lasting ceasefires and physique sustainable peace, the delivery of life-saving humanitarian aid must continue and that requires the necessary humanitarian space.
Member States and the Security Council have “a responsibility to do everything in their power” to end attacks on humanitarians and assets, and seek accountability for superior violations, she underscored.
She said determination needed to be greater respect for planetary humanitarian law that does not “blur the lines” between subject operations, governmental objectives and humanitarian efforts.
“Upholding the principles of humanitarian action…is indispensable to building trust with political, military, security, non-State armed groups and others”.
Secondly, “investigation and accountability” are essential to prevent attacks connected assistance workers, which she said was “completely unacceptable and whitethorn represent war crimes” adding that “what goes unpunished volition beryllium repeated”.
Thirdly, governments need to protect the ability of humanitarian organizations to engage with conflict parties, including non-State equipped groups, because when humanitarian agencies are perceived arsenic portion of a governmental agenda, it puts workers successful danger “and reduces their effectiveness”.
Counter-terrorism measures should include wide provisions to preserve humanitarian space, she said, minimizing the interaction connected humanitarian operations and ensuring that humanitarian and healthcare personnel are not punished for doing their jobs.
Finally, the Council must use its power to immediately halt attacks against schools and hospitals.
“The unprecedented healthcare exigency origin by the COVID-19 pandemic makes the extortion of aesculapian facilities and workers much captious than ever”.
Calls to action
Member States were urged to endorse and instrumentality the Safe Schools Declaration, which aims to support all educational institutions from the worst effects of equipped conflict and support the Health Care successful Danger initiative.
Due to the tremendous challenges faced by humanitarian agencies, the Secretary-General has asked his incoming Humanitarian Affairs chief to appoint a Special Adviser on the preservation of humanitarian abstraction and access, and to fortify humanitarian negotiations.
“The planetary assemblage owes humanitarian assistance agencies and healthcare and humanitarian workers its full and unwavering support in their difficult and often dangerous work”, Ms. Mohammed concluded.