Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

BUSINESS DAILY

More than half of French households will pay no income tax this year

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

#IceBucketChallenge and hashtag activism

Read more

DEBATE

Pakistan's Political Turmoil: Can Imran Khan's PTI Party Depose the Government? (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Pakistan's Political Turmoil: Can Imran Khan's PTI Party Depose the Government?

Read more

WEB NEWS

Web users taking on the "Ice Bucket Challenge" to fight ALS

Read more

FOCUS

Israel's minorities and military service

Read more

ENCORE!

Montreal Stories

Read more

DEBATE

Racism, riots and police violence: USA under scrutiny (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Racism, riots and police violence: USA under scrutiny

Read more

  • Ex-PM Juppé announces bid for 2017 French presidential race

    Read more

  • IS militants ‘behead’ missing US journalist in gruesome video

    Read more

  • Deadly airstrikes hit Gaza as ceasefire with Israel collapses

    Read more

  • Tentative peace in Ferguson despite second fatal shooting

    Read more

  • Suspected Ebola cases in Austria, new drug raises hopes

    Read more

  • WWII anniversary highlights best - and worst - of Paris police

    Read more

  • Headscarf at the beach sparks French MEP’s fury

    Read more

  • Iraqi army clashes with militants in Tikrit after retaking key dam

    Read more

  • Video: Life in under-siege Donetsk

    Read more

  • Racism, riots and police violence: USA under scrutiny

    Read more

  • ‘Let it be’: Londoners sick of Abbey Road tourists

    Read more

  • Australia to free children from immigration detention centres

    Read more

Middle east

UN to make ‘greater contacts’ with Syrian opposition

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-12-18

The UN is to increase its contacts with the Syrian opposition, the organisation’s humanitarian chief, Valerie Amos, said on Monday. She also asked Damascus for 10 more aid groups to be allowed into the country.

The UN humanitarian chief said Monday she has asked the Syrian government for 10 more aid groups to work in the country and will increase contacts with the opposition to help those in need.

Valerie Amos made her demands during a visit to Damascus on Saturday amid a growing humanitarian crisis in the country that has seen more than 43,000 people killed during a 21-month uprising against President Bashar al-Assad's regime.

More than half a million Syrians have fled their homes to neighboring countries, according to UN estimates.

Amos said she told the Syrian government that in order to assist the needy, UN workers would have to move across the regime's lines and into disputed territory or areas under rebel control.

"The key thing Saturday was informing the government that if we are truly to make use of the access that the government says we can have, it means that we have to cross lines, we have to move from government-controlled areas to disputed areas to opposition-controlled areas," she told reporters.

"I also informed the government that we will be making greater contacts with the opposition inside of Syria itself."

The Assad government accepted the move, according to Amos.

Amos said she asked the regime to allow the United Nations to import fuel in order to move around the country more easily, a request she deemed "extremely urgent." Damascus promised to respond by Tuesday.

The additional humanitarian organizations were needed for the United Nations to step up its activities "significantly," she added.

During her brief visit, Amos met with Foreign Minister Walid Muallem and other officials. She said she heard shelling all day long in Damascus, which highlights that "the security situation is volatile."

The UN suspended operations in Syria early this month and began withdrawing non-essential staff due to deteriorating security conditions. Local personnel staff the mission.

(AFP)

 

Date created : 2012-12-18

  • SYRIA

    Syrian jets fire on Palestinian refugee camp in Damascus

    Read more

  • SYRIA

    Syrians march in support of Jabhat al-Nusra militants

    Read more

  • SYRIA

    Humanitarian situation in eastern Syria 'catastrophic' says MSF

    Read more

COMMENT(S)