An official website of the United States government

Ambassador Donahoe’s Introduction Statement on the Syria Resolution
June 14, 2013

Statement by the United States Ambassador Eileen Donahoe
to Introduce the Syria Resolution 

Human Rights Council – 23rd Session
June 14, 2013

The United States, along with Turkey, Qatar, Kuwait, and the United Kingdom, presents for adoption a resolution entitled “the deterioration of the situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic and the need to grant immediate access to the Commission of Inquiry.”

This Council has consistently condemned the continued widespread and systematic gross violations of human rights and fundamental freedoms and all violations of international humanitarian law by the Syrian authorities and the government affiliated shabbiha militias, as well as any human rights violations and abuses as well as violations of international humanitarian law by armed opposition groups.  Those responsible must be held to account.

We are particularly dismayed by the rapid deterioration of the situation in Syria.  This resolution condemns in the strongest terms all massacres taking place in Syria, such as most recently in Al-Qusayr, and the intervention of all foreign combatants in Syria, including those fighting on behalf of the regime and in particular Hezbollah, because their involvement and role in ongoing atrocities further exacerbates the deteriorating human rights and humanitarian situation.

The resolution also focuses on the continued lack of cooperation of the Government of the Syrian Arab Republic with the commission of inquiry, in particular the persistent denial of access to Syria for members of the commission. It is long past time that the Syrian government cooperate with the mechanisms of this Council.

We demand that the Syrian authorities cooperate fully with the commission of inquiry, including by granting it immediate, full and unfettered access throughout the Syrian Arab Republic and responding promptly to its communications and requests.

We believe the message of this resolution is clear and indisputable.  We urge the Council to adopt the resolution by consensus.

Thank you.