The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon:
The Secretary-General strongly condemns the shelling and aerial bombardment of the Yarmouk refugee camp in Damascus on 28 April despite assurances from the Syrian Government that the camp would not be attacked while civilians remained inside. Thousands of civilians in the camp are besieged by terrorist and other armed groups on the inside and Government forces on the outside.
The Secretary-General calls on the Government to immediately end any military operation that could endanger the lives of civilians in Yarmouk camp and abide strictly by its obligations under international humanitarian and human rights law to protect civilians during armed conflict. He also calls on all parties to stop the violence so as to grant secure and sustained humanitarian access to civilians inside the camp.
The Secretary-General urges the Security Council and Member States with influence on the parties on the ground, including the Syrian Government, to do all in their power to protect civilian lives. The Government's adherence to commitments it has already made is critical to its role as an interlocutor for the international community.