“Present in this hall today are representatives of governments that have ignored, facilitated, funded, participated in or even planned and carried out atrocities inflicted by all sides of the Syria conflict against Syrian civilians,” the UN chief said at the opening of UN General Assembly.
Ban stressed that there is no military solution in Syria, noting that many groups have killed many innocent people in the war-torn country but the Syrian regime has been the worst as it continues to barrel bomb civilians and “systematically torture thousands of detainees.
“Powerful patrons that keep feeding the war machine also have blood on their hands,” he added.
The Secretary General also addressed Tuesday’s airstrike on UN-Syrian Arab Red Crescent aid convoy.
Ban called it a “sickening, savage, and apparently deliberate attack” and urged world leaders to hold the perpetrators of the attack accountable for their crime.
The UN suspended aid convoys access to Syria after the strike.
“I appeal to all those with influence to end the fighting and get talks started,” he said. “The future of Syria should not rest on the fate of a single man.”
In his last address to the UN General Assembly, the UN chief characterized Israel’s denial of Palestinian rights as “madness.
“This is madness. Replacing a two-state solution with a one-state construct would spell doom: denying Palestinians their freedom and rightful future, and pushing Israel further from its vision of a Jewish democracy towards greater global isolation,” he said.
He noted that the prospects for a two-state solution are “being lowered by the day”. All the while, the occupation grinds into its 50th year.
“It pains me that this past decade has been 10 years lost to peace,” he said. “Ten years lost to illegal settlement expansion. Ten years lost to intra-Palestinian divide, growing polarization and hopelessness.”
Addressing several other conflicts across the globe from Ukraine to Myanmar, Ban told leaders: “Serve your people. Do not subvert democracy; do not pilfer your country’s resources; do not imprison and torture your critics.”
Leaders from around the world are in New York for 71st session of General Assembly with an emphasis on sustainable global development goals.