MOSCOW: Russia has invited President-elect Donald Trump to ‘ Syrian #Peace Talks ‘ in Astana set to begin in late January, reports claim on Saturday – @AceNewsServices

#AceNewsReport – Jan.14: Putin has invited Trump to Astana Kazakhstan for ‘ Syria #Peace Talks ‘ in January reports today…

DUxNyCx.jpgThe invitation was made, according to an #anonymous transition official speaking with the Washington Post, during a Dec. 28 phone call between Russia’s ambassador to the United States, Sergei Kislyak, and Trump’s pick for national security adviser, Michael T. Flynn.

The talks, which will include Turkey, Iran and representatives for both the Syrian government and opposition, are reportedly being held in Astana, the capital city of Kazakhstan.

“It remains unclear which of the non-terrorist opposition groups, variously backed by the United States, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and others in the region, will attend the talks,” the Post writes.

Although the anonymous transition official asserted that “no decision was made” during Flynn’s phone call, Turkish media reported Friday that the United States would indeed attend.

U.S. participation, especially if an agreement is reached, would be the first indication of the enhanced U.S.-Russia cooperation that President Vladi­mir Putin and President-elect Donald Trump have forecast under a Trump administration,” the Post adds.

Russia, Iran and Turkey previously met on Dec. 20 in Moscow to discuss ending the Syrian conflict and declined to invite the Obama administration.

The six-year confrontation has pitted the Assad government – allied with Iran and Russia – against the Syrian opposition, a mishmash of al-Qaeda aligned jihadists and rebels – backed by Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the United States.

During his presidential campaign Trump repeatedly questioned the ideological leanings of alleged “moderate” rebels and called upon increased cooperation with the Russian government in the fight against #ISIS.

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SYRIA: So what next in Aleppo as no humanitarian aid gets through and hundreds cannot evacuate even so warplanes bombard and obliterate the area all in the name of #Peace – @AceNewsServices

#AceNewsReport – Sept.23: Warplanes pound rebel-held areas of Aleppo, Syria, hours after Syrian army announces start of military operation, rescue workers and activists say – Reuters
http://tmsnrt.rs/2d5dbgd

At least 14 killed in airstrike on Syrian medical clinic near Aleppo

At least 14 people died amid airstrikes targeting a medical facility in southern Aleppo two days after a fierce attack on an aid convoy in the same city left 21 dead, a medical organization told dpa on Wednesday.

Two nurses, two ambulance drivers and 10 patients were #killed in the attack on the facility,” Zaidoun Zoabi, chief executive of the Union of Medical Care and Relief Organizations (UOSSM), said.

A man registers for vaccine during a vaccination campaign carried out by the Syrian Arab Red Crescent, on September 19, 2016, in the rebel-held town of Douma, on the eastern edges of the capital Damascus. (AFP/Abd Doumany)
Syrian government to intensify offensive on east Aleppo

The Syrian Army has announced a new offensive in the rebel-held east of Aleppo, days after a week-long ceasefire crumbled.

Since the end of the truce, war planes have pounded the country’s largest city with its heaviest air strikes in months, killing dozens people, reports suggest.

Syrian pro-regime fighters patrol the Ramussa area south of the city of Aleppo, on September 21, 2016. (AFP/George Ourfalian)

More ‘strategic evacuations’ from Syria to come while attack on aid convoys snuffs out hopes for peace

Tactics aimed ultimately at breaking the will of those who resist the regime have been employed on the ground for many months in Syria, not least contentious sieges that have led to near-starvation and/or forced evacuations.

On the morning of Eid al-Adha two non-descript 4x4s pulled up outside a mosque in the Damascus suburbs. Bashar al-Assad emerged to join prayers inside the recently evacuated town of Daraya.

Syrian troops stand guard as a bus carrying people drives by, as part of an evacuation from the town of Daraya outside the capital Damascus on August 26, 2016 (AFP/Youssef Karwashan)

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PESHAWAR CARNAGE & CHARLIE HEBDO: ‘ LET’S STAND TOGETHER ONE AND ALL AGAINST TERRORISM ‘

#AceNewsServices – Featured Post: Jan.11 – Peshawar Carnage & Charlie Hedbo| Lets Stand Against Terrorism

10551003_1611159329107966_2013229365447255076_n

This picture depicting the fanatic Islamists on a global scale, be in Iraq, Pakistan and elsewhere. We Pakistanis think this is what should offend other fellow citizens global community.

Today. Pakistanis are calling out the Taliban. Demand that the Government take serious action.

#PeshawarAttack - 1 -Screenshot from 2015-01-11 14:40:18

#PeshawarAttack – 1 -Screenshot from 2015-01-11 14:40:18

#JeSuisCharlie - Screenshot from 2015-01-11 14:48:31

#JeSuisCharlie – Screenshot from 2015-01-11 14:48:31

We are not a nation of Taliban apologists. No more will we remain the SILENT majority. Break your silence. Take Action. Have #NoFear. #NeverForget#PeshawarAttack.

In wake of two recent horrifying events of Peshawar School Attack and Charlie Hedbo attack that killed French cartoonists, we Pakistanis are protesting against effing retards blowing themselves up in the name of religion. We stand against terrorism and stand with every innocent around the world killed due to it.

We stand with French, Americans, Pakistanis and all those who have lost their lives facing and fighting terrorism. 

We also credit some 10’000 Pakistani soldiers who lost their lives in but killed more than 20’000 deadly Taliban and we also pay a tribute for 60’000 Pakistani citizens who lost their lives due to Al Qaeda, Talibans and ISIS.

STAND UP! GET UP! And say No to Terrorism in Name of Any Religion!

Courtesy: Pakistani Facebook group Calling out the Taliban and Terrorism

Source: 

#ANS2015

#al-qaeda, #france-charlie-hedbo-attack, #human-rights-defenders, #nofear, #peace, #religious-extremism, #social-media, #taliban-school-attack-in-peshawar

COLUMBIA: ‘ GOVERNMENT & FARC RESUME PEACE TALKS AFTER RELEASE OF GENERAL ‘

#AceWorldNews – COLUMBIA – Dec.04 – The Colombian government and the country’s main rebel group, FARC, have resumed the peace talks suspended last month over the abduction of an army general.

Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC)

Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC)

Like the previous round, the talks will be held in Cuba in an effort to “de-escalate” the 50-year conflict between the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia and the central government in Bogota, said Norwegian and Cuban mediators on Wednesday.

The officials who are brokering a deal between the opposing sides said the talks would be held from December 10 to 17.

“We consider the crisis over and announce that we have agreed that the next cycle of conversations will take place between December 10 and 17 ,” said a joint statement read by Cuban mediator Jose Luis Ponce.

The announcement followed FARC’s release of General Ruben Alzate along with two other captives on Sunday.

#ANS2014 

#peace, #talks

‘ ACTIVISTS MISLEAD PROTESTERS TO BREAK-IN TO OFFICES WITH FALSE INFORMATION ‘

#AceWorldNews – HONG KONG – Nov.19 – A small group of protesters in Hong Kong clashed with police early Wednesday, while trying to break into the city’s legislature.

Occupy condemns attack on Legco as pan-democrats claim protesters were 'misled'Screenshot from 2014-11-19 12:22:11

Police arrested six people in the clashes that came hours after authorities enforced a court order to clear some barricades, AP reported.

The activists used metal barricades and concrete slabs to smash glass doors at the legislature before police used pepper spray and batons.

Another group involved in organizing the protests, Occupy Central, said that those responsible for the violence misled the crowd into attacking the legislature by spreading “false information.”

Occupy condemns attack on Legco as pan-democrats claim protesters were 'misled'

Occupy condemns attack on Legco as pan-democrats claim protesters were ‘misled’

Lawmakers are also worried the incident would provide an excuse for pro-establishment lawmakers to push through a proposal to build a three-metre high metal fence outside the Legco complex SCMP reported. 

“The violent acts have violated the principle of peace and non-violence underlying the umbrella movement,” Civic Party leader Alan Leong Kah-kit said.

“We feel the [break-in] will have a negative impact on the movement. We’re heartbroken.”

#ANS2014 

#activists, #lawmakers, #peace, #protesters, #violence

MOSCOW: ‘ US Lethal Weapons Deliveries to Kiev Would Undermine Minsk Agreements on Peace Resolution ‘

#AceNewsServices – MOSCOW- October 09 (RIA Novosti) – Potential US deliveries of lethal weaponry to Kiev would undermine agreements on the peaceful resolution of the current crisis in eastern Ukraine, the Russian Foreign Ministry said Thursday.

“All agreements that have been recently reached – those in Minsk on September 5 and 19 – clearly stipulate the necessity of a ceasefire, withdrawal of heavy weaponry and concrete steps in disarmament, rather than boosting up the strength of Kiev-led forces,” spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said at a news briefing in Moscow.

“This [US arms supplies] is not something that is needed to ensure political settlement in Ukraine,” the diplomat said.

#ANS2014

#kiev, #minsk, #moscow, #peace, #ukraine

BRITAIN: ‘ Demonstrations in London Against UK’s Part of the US-led Coalition Leading to Alan Henning’s Death ‘

#AceNewsServices – BRITAIN (London) – October 04 – Several hundred people have staged a demonstration in Britain to express their resentment over the country’s involvement in the US-led air-strikes against positions of the ISIL Takfiri militants in Iraq.

'Supporters of the 'Stop the War” coalition and “Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament” march through central London on October 4, 2014, calling for the bombing of Iraq to stop'

‘Supporters of the ‘Stop the War” coalition and “Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament” march through central London on October 4, 2014, calling for the bombing of Iraq to stop’

The demonstrators marched in central London on Saturday, chanting slogans like “Hands off the Middle East, no justice, no peace.” They also held up placards reading “Stop bombing Iraq.”

The march came a day after ISIL terrorists released a grisly video purportedly showing the beheading of British hostage, Alan Henning.

Henning, an English taxi driver, was a member of a group of volunteers that traveled to Syria in December 2013 to distribute food and water to people affected by the country’s war.

According to his co-workers, he was abducted the day after Christmas by masked gunmen.

Britain launched its first air-strikes on positions and assets controlled by the ISIL on September 1; days after the UK parliament approved the use of air raids requested by the Iraqi government.

British anti-war campaigners are worried that the strikes may have a galvanizing effect on the ISIL’s recruitment.

Source: 

#ANS2014 

#alan-henning, #britain, #iraq, #iraqi, #isil, #isis, #justice, #london, #peace, #syria, #uk

`Happy Easter to All our Readers and Fellow Blogger’s Across the World ‘

#AceNewsGroup – HAPPY EASTER – April 20 – On this day l would like to wish all the fellow readers and bloggers a very Happy and Enjoyable Easter Day.

May there be Peace and not War and may all Countries Live in Harmony together, now and in the Future.

Amen.

#ANS2014

#happy-easter, #harmony, #peace

” Russia will do it best to Ensure Peace in the `Ukraine’ according to FM”

AceWorldNews says that according to /ITAR-TASS/.Russia will do its best to ensure peace and calm in Ukraine, the Foreign Ministry reported on Wednesday.

“Russia demands the opposition leaders stop bloodshed in the country and resume a dialogue with the legitimate authorities without threats and ultimatums,” the ministry said in a statement.

“Ukraine is Russia’s friendly state and strategic partner. We’ll do our best to ensure peace and calm in the country,” the statement says.

#aceworldnews, #foreign-ministry, #itar-tass, #opposition-leaders, #peace, #ukraine

” Kerry criticises Russia for `enabling’ Assad to stay in Power”

#AceWorldNews says the US Secretary of State John Kerry criticized Russia on Monday for “enabling” Syria’s President Bashar Assad to stay in power. Geneva peace talks broke off without result at the weekend.

The Syrian regime “stonewalled” at the talks and continue to “destroy their own country,” Kerry said during a visit to the Indonesian capital Jakarta.

“They’re doing so with increased support from Iran, from Hezbollah and from Russia,” AFP quoted him as saying. “Russia needs to be a part of the solution and not be distributing so much more weapons and so much more aid,” he said.

#afp, #geneva, #hezbollah, #indonesian, #jakarta, #john-kerry, #peace, #president-bashar-assad, #us

“Pakistan-Taliban Landmark Peace Talks Start”

#AceWorldNews says delegates from both the Pakistani government and the Taliban met for over three hours on Thursday in the first round of peace talks targeted at putting an end to the militant group’s insurgent activities. The meeting took place in Islamabad after Tuesday’s talks failed to take place after the Pakistani government expressed doubts about the Taliban negotiators.

During the successfully rescheduled meeting on Thursday, the two groups charted a ‘roadmap’ for future discussions, with Irfan Siddiqui, the government’s chief negotiator saying the Taliban had “responded to us beyond our expectations,” according to AFP.

#afp, #government, #groups, #islamabad, #militants, #pakistani, #peace, #taliban

#Afghanistan : ” Hamid Karzi `Refuses’ to `Sign’ `Bilateral Security Agreement’ with US”

#AceWorldNews says ​Afghan President rejects US security deal over Taliban peace talks
Afghan President Hamid Karzai has once again refused to sign a Bilateral Security Agreement with the US, insisting on a start to the peace process with the Taliban.
“Afghanistan will absolutely not accept or sign anything under pressure,” Karzai said. The pact, without which the US would have to withdraw its troops before the end of 2014, was debated last year and presupposed that some 15 thousand international troops would maintain a presence to train the country’s military forces.
Earlier Karzai promised to make a decision after the presidential poll in April.

#afghanistan, #bilateral-security-agreement, #hamid-karzi, #peace, #rt-news, #taliban, #us

Turkish Truck Drivers Confess: Erdogan’s Government Facilitates Weapons Trafficking into Syria

#AceNewsServices says “Turkish Truck Drivers Confess: Erdogan’s Government Facilitates Weapons Trafficking into #Syria
#Peace

Friends of Syria

TEHRAN (FNA)- Turkish truck drivers admitted trafficking weapons to the terrorist groups in Syria through Turkey with full support of Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government.

13921019000191_PhotoI

In a field investigation, the drivers confessed that the terrorist groups are handed the weapons in a border area they describe it as “a buffer zone”, SANA reported.

The Turkish drivers stressed that they deliver not only weapons and ammunition to what they described as “the opposition”, but all sorts of good with the knowledge of all Turkeys’ officials.

The drivers’ confessions come to confirm a fact that was conveyed by Hurriyet Turkish Newspaper last week, saying that the security forces seized a Turkish truck filled with big amounts of weapons and ammunition while it was on its way to Syria.

The facilitations provided by Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government to terrorists groups for transferring weapons into Syria raised indignant reactions inside Turkey and pushed a number…

View original post 17 more words

#aceworldnews, #erdogans, #government, #peace, #syria, #turkey

Ex-ISIL detainees tell horror stories of captivity in Aleppo

#AceNewsServices says #Syria “Horror Stories of Captivity in Aleppo” #Peace

Friends of Syria

Horror stories have begun to emerge in the wake of the freeing of several hundred captives of the Al-Qaeda-linked Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in Aleppo.

Other terrorist groups from the so-called Free Syrian Army, the extremist Islamic Front, and several independent groups have been locked in a campaign against the hardline Al-Qaeda militants of ISIL over the past week.

Wednesday’s rebel capture of a central detention facility used by ISIL in Aleppo – a children’s eye hospital in the neighborhood of Qadi Askar – led to freedom for several hundred people, who have begun to tell their stories of captivity.

Two eight-minute videos posted on YouTube by media activists from the city featured interviews with former captives of the militant group.

In one, Milad Shehabi, a prominent media activist who was himself detained last month, said he spent his first 13 days of captivity blindfolded, and…

View original post 488 more words

#aceworldnews, #aleppo, #peace, #syria

Vatican Will Host Summit to Brainstorm Solution in Syria

#AceWorldNews says “Vatican will Host Summit To Brainstorm Solution In #Syria according to AP” The invitees will be Tony Blair and Mohamed ElBaradei #Peace

#geneva2, #mohamed-elbaradei, #tony-blair, #vatican

#Syria has been urged by News Outlets to Halt Abductions of Journalists #Peace

 

 

Image representing Associated Press as depicte...

Image via CrunchBase

 

#AceWorldNews says according to BEIRUT (AP) — Major international news organizations sent a letter to the leadership of the armed opposition in Syria Wednesday, calling for urgent action against rebel groups increasingly targeting journalists for kidnappings.

 

The letter, signed by 13 news organizations including The Associated Press, is in response to a sharp rise in the kidnapping of journalists while on assignment in opposition-held areas in northern Syria.

 

The widespread seizure of journalists is unprecedented and has so far been largely under-reported by news organizations in the hope that keeping the kidnappings out of public view may help with negotiating the captives’ release. The scale of the abductions — more than 30 are believed to be currently held — and the lack of response to individual mediation efforts have encouraged some families and employers to speak out.

 

Most kidnappings since the summer have taken place in rebel-held territories, particularly in chaotic northern and eastern Syria, where militant al-Qaida-linked groups hold influence. Among the most dangerous places are the northeastern city of Raqqa, which was taken over by al-Qaida militants shortly after it became the first city to fall entirely into rebel hands; the eastern Deir el-Zour province; the border town of Azaz; and the corridor leading to Aleppo, once a main route for journalists going into Syria.

 

“As long as kidnappings are permitted to continue unabated, journalists will not be willing to undertake assignments inside Syria, and they will no longer be able to serve as witnesses to the events taking place within Syria’s borders,” the letter said.

 

Signatories to the letter are the AP, Agence France Presse, Reuters, BBC, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Atlantic Media, The Economist, Getty Images, The Guardian, the Los Angeles Times and The Telegraph.

 

Colonel Riyad al-Asad and others announcing th...

Colonel Riyad al-Asad and others announcing the FSA’s formation in an online video statement (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

The open letter is being sent to the leadership of the Western-backed mainstream Free Syrian Army and to individual armed groups including the Islamic Front, an umbrella organization of six of the most powerful brigades in Syria.

 

Syria’s rebels are a disparate group of brigades and battalions, increasingly dominated by Islamic extremists, including al-Qaida-linked groups such as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant and Jabhat al-Nusra.

 

The closest thing to a central command is the Supreme Military Council of the Free Syrian Army, headed by Gen. Salim Idris, a secular-minded moderate. But he holds limited sway over the myriad groups inside Syria, some of which have broken away from the Free Syrian Army, announcing that the group did not represent them. Infighting between the extremists and moderates is on the rise, undermining their fight against President Bashar Assad.

 

While jihadi groups are believed responsible for most kidnappings since the summer, government-backed militias, criminal gangs and rebels affiliated with the Free Syrian Army also have been involved. Their motives have ranged from ransom to prisoner exchanges.

 

The Syrian National Coalition, Syria’s main opposition group in exile considered to be the political arm of the Free Syrian Army, condemned the kidnapping of journalists in a statement issued Wednesday.

 

“The Syrian Coalition and the General Staff of the Free Syrian Army reiterate their commitment to exerting all efforts necessary to secure the release of all kidnapped persons and provide protection to journalists and human rights activists operating in Syria,” the statement said.

 

The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists says approximately 30 foreign and Syrian journalists are missing and 55 have been killed since Syria’s civil war began in early 2011. CPJ also has documented at least 26 other journalists who disappeared this year but are now safe.

 

Many of the abduction cases go unreported at the request of the families or employers. News organizations on a case-by-case basis are inclined to respect such requests, regardless of the identity of the person abducted, if they are convinced that publication would increase the danger for the victim.

 

On Tuesday, the families of two Spanish journalists abducted nearly three months ago appealed publicly for their release, after failing to make contact with the captors via intermediaries. Javier Espinosa, Middle East bureau chief of El Mundo newspaper, and Ricardo Garcia Vilanova, a freelance photographer who was traveling with him, were taken captive Sept. 16 by members of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant at a checkpoint in the northeastern Raqqa province, the families said.

 

In the letter, the 13 news organizations said it was “imperative” for the leadership of the armed opposition to commit itself to assuring that journalists can work within Syria, secure from the threat of kidnapping.

 

“Among other things, we ask the leadership to assist in identifying those groups currently holding journalists and take the steps necessary to bring about their release,” the statement said.

 

 

 

#aceworldnews, #al-nusra-front, #ap, #associated-press, #deir-ez-zor, #free-syrian-army, #islamic-state-of-iraq, #national-coalition-for-syrian-revolutionary-and-opposition-forces, #new-york-times, #peace, #syria

REPORT: “Palestinians Reject Kerry #Peace Plan”

#AceWorldNews says according to latest reports Secretary of State John Kerry’s Middle East peace plan appeared to unravel late last week after Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas rejected “most” of the key details, according to regional experts and media reports.

Kerry landed in Israel on Thursday for another round of talks between Palestinian and Israeli leaders as he pushes them to accept the parameters of a U.S.-backed security plan and interim agreement.

However, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas reportedly rejected many key elements of the deal, claiming that it was too kind to Israel.

“This looks like a plan drafted by Israel,” Abbas reportedly told Jordanian King Abdullah II, according to Israel Hayom.

“Before meeting with Kerry, Abbas told Jordanian King Abdullah II that he intends to reject most of the points suggested in the American proposal,” a senior Palestinian official was quoted as telling the Israeli paper.

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#peace-acenewsservices, #kerry, #palestinians, #peace

United Nations Official Say’s That Perhaps 250,000 #Syrian’s Maybe Cut Off From Aid in Besieged Communities Across the War-Torn Country #Peace

#AceWorldNews says Reporting “modest progress” with the Syrian Government on speeding up visa issuance and increasing the number of relief distribution hubs, a top United Nations official said the other that with perhaps 250,000 Syrians cut off from aid in besieged communities across the war-torn country, greater efforts are needed to ensure real gains on the humanitarian front.

Security Council“I advised the Security Council that we have seen some modest progress in terms of administrative procedures that had been put in place over time,” said Valerie Amos, the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, as she spoke to reporters after briefing the 15-member body on the humanitarian situation in Syria.

This is her second closed-door meeting with the Council since it adopted, on 2 October, a Presidential Statement urging the Syrian Government to immediately allow humanitarian access to relieve the plight of civilians trapped by heavy fighting, including cross-line aid deliveries.

The statement, which called on all parties to the conflict to agree on humanitarian pauses in the fighting, with special attention to key delivery routes, also deplored the escalating violence in a conflict that has killed more than 100, 000 people and driven some 6.5 million others from their homes since opposition protesters first sought to oust the Government of President Bashar al-Assad in March 2011.

On the implementation of the statement, Ms. Amos cited progress, for example, in the Government’s decision to grant some 50 visas on an individual basis.

OCHA SyriaDamascus has also given the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) permission to open three additional relief hubs, “but only two of these will actually be helpful to us, because the third being proposed – Al Sweida – will not allow us access into Western Dera’a, which is where the hard-to-reach communities are.”

She also noted that both the Government and the opposition had indicated who the interlocutors are for the UN to try to facilitate humanitarian access.

“However, I did remind the Council that on some of the more difficult areas – protection of civilians, de-militarization of schools and hospitals, access to besieged communities and also cross-line access to hard-to-reach areas – we have not seen any progress.

“I need the Council to continue to make it absolutely clear that targeting civilians is against international humanitarian law and that we need to do greater work to ensure that the recommendations in the Presidential Statement are achieved,” she declared.

Responding to questions, Ms. Amos said that an estimated 250,000 civilians are trapped in besieged communities, while perhaps some 2.5 million were in hard-to-reach areas – places that aid workers have been able to reach but not frequently enough to make any real headway against the overall needs.

Asked if a Council resolution – which carry legal obligations for UN Member States ¬– would improve the situation, Ms. Amos said: “My focus is on how what has already been agreed can be put into effect. Should the Council agree on a resolution, then we will operationalize that.”

Indeed, while the UN and its partners have made gains in reaching civilians across the strife-riven country, in the context of the scale of the crisis, “this is far too few to meet the needs of the people. Of course the issue is what is the best means to reach people in need? For me, the unity of the Security Council is the key here.”

Meanwhile, UN agencies continue pressing ahead with relief efforts, now rushing to fortify desperate civilians against the oncoming winter season.

UNICEFBriefing the press in Geneva today, Marixie Mercado, spokesperson for the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) warned: “The scale of the humanitarian response needed for the looming winter is unprecedented, as the number quadrupled as compared to the previous year.”

She explained that in December 2012, there were approximately 1.15 million children affected by the crisis inside Syria, with an additional 232,000 Syrian children living as refugees in neighbouring countries.

As the conflict approaches its fourth year, those numbers have skyrocketed to 4.3 million and 1.2 million, respectively. UNICEF has worked since early October to equip children as quickly as possible for the cold. Blankets, plastic sheeting, winter clothing and hygiene kits are being distributed, along with wintered tents and fuel to heat classrooms.

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees ...

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Representation in Cyprus (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For its part, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has commenced an emergency airlift of urgently needed winter supplies to reinforce its stockpile in northern Iraq with relief items for up to 50,000 vulnerable Syrians.  A UNHCR-chartered Boeing 777 landed at Erbil airport on Monday carrying 90 metric tons of relief items to help 4,400 families over the winter months, including plastic tarpaulins, thermal blankets, sleeping mats, jerry cans and kitchen sets.

“While UNHCR has adequate stocks inside Iraq to meet the immediate needs, we want to ensure that sufficient items are on-hand to address any developments,” said UNHCR’s Amman-based Director for the Middle East and North Africa, Amin Awad. “The relief items we are airlifting will reinforce the UNHCR-led winterization regional response as temperatures are starting to drop across higher altitude areas in the Syria region.”

English: An armored vehicle from the United Na...

English: An armored vehicle from the United Nations (UN) World Food Program (WFP) leads a convoy of UN vehicles in procession carrying the remains of bombing victims from the UN Office of Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq (UNOHCI), as the arrive at , , during Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. The bombing victims remains will be airlifted to their respective home countries for repatriation. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Elisabeth Byrs, spokesperson for the World Food Programme (WFP), told reporters that the agency dispatched enough food for over 3.4 million people inside Syria in November, mainly to internally displaced families in 13 governorates, and had reached eight more locations, which had been inaccessible in recent months.

However, she said WFP remains gravely concerned about the fate of many Syrians still trapped in conflict zones throughout the country, including around Damascus and in Al Hassakeh, where some areas have been without food assistance for six consecutive months.

WFP aims to reach 4 million people inside Syria every month, as well as to provide assistance for nearly 1.5 million refugees in neighbouring countries.

 

#aceworldnews, #bashar-al-assad, #damascus, #iraq, #middle-east, #peace, #presidential-statement, #syria, #syrian-government, #syrians, #unhcr, #unicef, #united-nations, #united-nations-high-commissioner-for-refugees, #united-nations-security-council, #world-food-programme

UN: Pays Tribute to #NelsonMandela Telling Thousands that Gathered at Memorial Service in Johannesburg #Peace

English: Nelson Mandela, former President of S...

English: Nelson Mandela, former President of South Africa (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

#AceWorldNews says Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today paid tribute to the late Nelson Mandela, telling the tens of thousands gathered at the memorial service held in Johannesburg that the life and legacy of the former South African president was an inspiration not only for his country but for the world.

“This grandest of all baobab trees left deep roots that reach across the planet,” Mr. Ban <“http://www.un.org/sg/statements/index.asp?nid=7347“>said, addressing a rain-soaked crowd at the soccer stadium that hosted the opening and closing ceremonies for the 2010 World Cup.

Mr. Mandela passed away last Thursday at the age of 95. Affectionately known as ‘Madiba,’ the late human rights lawyer, prisoner of conscience and Nobel Peace Prize winner was the first democratically elected President of postapartheid South Africa.

“Nelson Mandela was more than one of the greatest leaders of our time. He was one of the greatest teachers. And he taught by example. He sacrificed so much and was willing to give up everything – for freedom and equality, for democracy and justice,” said Mr. Ban.

“His compassion stands out most. He was angry at injustice, not at individuals. He hated hatred, not the people caught in its grip. He showed the awesome power of forgiveness – and of connecting people with each other and with the true meaning of peace. That was his unique gift – and that was the lesson he shared with all humankind.”

The Secretary-General, who was among nearly 100 world leaders attending the service, said that South Africa’s democratic transformation was a victory by and for South Africans.

“But it was also a triumph for the ideals of the United Nations – and for anyone, anywhere, who has ever faced the poison of prejudice,” he added.

Nelson Mandela's former house in Soweto, Johan...

Nelson Mandela’s former house in Soweto, Johannesburg, now Mandela Family Museum. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“The United Nations stood side by side with Nelson Mandela and the people of South Africa in the fight against apartheid. We used every tool we had: sanctions, an arms embargo, a sports boycott, diplomatic isolation. We spoke up loud and clear across the world.

“Apartheid was vanquished,” Mr. Ban said. “But as he would be the first to say, our struggle continues – against inequality and intolerance, and for prosperity and peace.

“Nelson Mandela showed us the way with a heart larger than this stadium and an infectious smile that could easily power its lights. In fact, it lit up the world…

“It is the duty of all of us who loved him to keep his memory alive in our hearts, and to embody his example in our lives.”

New York, Dec 10 2013 11:00AM

 

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Mass Demolition of 35 Bedouin Villages Displaces 40,000 Residents in Their Ancestral Homes

Office of the United Nations High Commissioner...

Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

#AceWelfareNews says the United Nations human rights office recently urged Israeli authorities to halt the recent wave of demolitions of Bedouin structures, noting the destruction of this property violates international humanitarian law.

“These mass demolitions raise serious concerns about the prohibition on forced evictions under international human rights law, and Israel’s obligations to respect, protect and fulfill the rights of Palestinians to adequate housing and freedom from arbitrary or unlawful interference with privacy, family and home,” said Rupert Colville, spokesperson for the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).

In July, OHCHR urged Israel to reconsider a proposed law that would result in the demolition of up to 35 Bedouin villages, displacing as many as 40,000 members of these communities from their ancestral homes.

However, demolitions began on 19 August and have been carried out by Israeli authorities in at least six different locations, including East Jerusalem. Subsequently, on 11 September all but two residential structures in the Bedouin community of Az Za’ayyem on the edge of Jerusalem were demolished.

The latest wave of demolitions occurred on 16 September, when 58 structures were knocked down, including all residential structures and livestock shelters in the herding community of Mak-hul in the northern Jordan Valley.

According to OHCHR, all 10 families inhabiting the structures were rendered homeless and no alternative housing options were offered.

English: Bedouin woman in Jerusalem. Gaeilge: ...

English: Bedouin woman in Jerusalem. Gaeilge: Bean Bedouin i Iarúsailéim, idir 1898 agus 1914 This is a restored version of the original LoC .tif file with damaged areas cropped and missing foliage replaced at far upper right. Dirt and scratches removed, fading at bottom addressed. Sharpened and levels adjusted. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Israeli authorities denied the provision of emergency shelter assistance to the community by humanitarian organizations,” Mr. Colville said. “The community remains vulnerable to further demolitions and repeated displacement due to lack of legal security of tenure and the consequent inability to obtain building permits.”

Mr. Colville added that the obligations of Israel with respect to the right of adequate housing of Palestinians in the occupied Palestinian territory include ensuring access to basic shelter and housing, and refraining from interfering with the enjoyment of these rights.

#acenewsservices, #az-zaayyem, #bedouin, #demolition, #east-jerusalem, #human-rights, #israel, #israeli-authorities, #jerusalem, #negev, #office-of-the-united-nations-high-commissioner-for-human-rights, #ohchr, #palestinian-people, #palestinian-territories, #peace, #rupert-colville