UN chief voices concern over escalation of violence in Syria

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is greatly concerned by the recent escalation of violence in Northwest Syria, including shelling and airstrikes, which has resulted in civilian deaths and casualties in and around camps for internally displaced persons in Idlib governorate, said a spokeswoman on Wednesday.

Guterres calls on all parties to exercise maximum restraint and refrain from escalating the situation, said Stephanie Tremblay, an associate spokesperson for the secretary-general.

Guterres calls for calm and reaffirms the need for a nationwide cease-fire as called for in Security Council Resolution 2254, she told a daily press briefing.

On Tuesday, Tremblay said that at least 121 civilians had been killed and 210 others injured in Northwest Syria this year. Humanitarian conditions continue to decline due to ongoing hostilities and a deepening economic crisis. Some 4.1 million people — 80 percent of them women and children — rely on UN aid to meet their most basic needs. ■

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