UN General Assembly passes resolution drafted by Saudi Arabia on Syria

November 22, 2013

The United Nations General Assembly has passed a draft resolution, submitted by the Kingdom on behalf of 66 member countries, calling for the enhancement and protection of human rights in Syria and the cessation of the killings and atrocities being committed by the Damascus government. As many as 123 states voted for resolution No. A/C.3/68/L.42LRev.1, while 46 states abstained and 13 opposed.

Wednesday’s vote was preceded by a thorough debate on the state of human rights in Syria. Presenting the draft resolution, Saudi Arabia’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Abdullah bin Yahya Al-Maalami, expressed sorrow over the killings and abuses being carried out against the Syrian people with conventional and chemical weapons. He reiterated the Kingdom’s disappointment with the international community for its failure to take effective action to end the crisis. Al-Maalami warned that every day the amount of killing, torture, imprisonment, oppression, abductions and rape against Syrian civilians increases, while the Syrian regime uses foreign militias to carry out massacres.

Citing UN reports, he pointed out that more than 100,000 people have been killed, around 9 million have been displaced, nearly half of the Syrian population is in dire need of food aid, polio and epidemic hepatitis are on the rise, and nearly 2.5 million people are being besieged inside Syria. While welcoming international efforts to destroy Syria’s chemical weapons, Al-Maalami denounced as shameful the world’s inaction in the face of these horrific human rights violations.