Syria has denounced a European Union-sponsored donor conference recently held with the purported goal of “supporting” crisis-stricken Syrians, dismissing the outcomes of the “show event” as illegitimate.
“The Syrian Arab Republic expresses its disapproval of holding that conference without the invitation of the Syrian government which is the side concerned in the Syrian people’s affairs and the main partner of the UN,” Foreign and Expatriates Ministry said in a letter addressed to the UN secretary general and president of the Security Council on Wednesday, Syria’s official news agency SANA reported.
Earlier this week, the EU and the United Nations co-chaired the so-called fifth Brussels Conference on “supporting the future of Syria and the region,” which was attended by the European countries, several UN agencies and the United States, among others.
During the two-day event, which excluded the Syrian government, the representatives of the participating countries and UN bodies took turns to deliver speeches on the humanitarian situation in Syria and called for a political settlement of the conflict in the Arab country.
At the end of the forum, the participants pledged €5.3 billion for 2021 and beyond for Syria and the neighboring countries hosting the largest Syrian refugee population.
This is while the European Union and the US along with their Middle Eastern allies — some of whom were present at the event — are viewed as the main sponsors of the militant groups and notorious terrorist outfits operating, since early 2011, to overthrow the government in Damascus.
Simultaneously with the militancy they have been fueling in Syria, the EU and US have imposed a host of unilateral economic sanctions on the Arab nation over the past decade in what appears to be an attempt to deny the Damascus government of its financial resources and hamper its fight against the terror groups they have been supporting.
Further in its letters to the UN, the Syrian Foreign Ministry rejected the organizers’ claims that they seek to assist the Syrian people and mobilize other countries to allocate money to that effect, saying the conference has in fact “turned into a tool of pressure and blackmail in the hands of donor countries to impose their dictates on the mechanisms of providing humanitarian aid and politicizing the humanitarian work.”
The letter said the UN’s presidency of the conference in light of the Syrian government’s absence represents a clear violation of the principles of the UN Charter and relevant Security Council resolutions, which all call for respecting Syria’s sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity.
The ministry further slammed the participants’ double-standard approach towards the humanitarian issue.
“Imposing and renewing more unilateral and coercive measures by the EU and US…and organizing that conference at the same time reflect hypocrisy in dealing with the humanitarian situation in Syria,” the letter said.
It added that providing humanitarian assistance is not in harmony with imposing unilateral sanctions, which amount to economic terrorism.
The ministry stressed the importance of engaging in serious and constructive cooperation with the Syrian government and supporting its efforts along with its humanitarian partners to improve the living conditions of people in the war-torn country, meet their needs and support them everywhere.
It reminded the participants in the Brussels event that the Syrian capital, Damascus, “and not any other city, is the center of the humanitarian affairs related to the Arab country’s people.
The Syrian government has repeatedly condemned the US and the EU for waging economic terrorism on the country through their unilateral sanctions, holding them responsible for the sufferings of the Syrian people, especially now that the country is grappling with a deadly coronavirus outbreak.
Damascus has also been critical of the United Nations for keeping silent for the destructive role of the US and EU, among other parties supporting terrorism in Syria.