Saturday 31 August 2013

Lucas calls for redoubling of Syrian aid efforts following Commons vote

Following Thursday’s parliamentary vote against military intervention in Syria, the Green Party MP for Brighton Pavilion is calling for a redoubling of humanitarian support to the region.

Caroline Lucas said:

“Whatever the political significance of (Thursday’s) vote, it’s vital that the focus urgently shifts now to humanitarian support for the victims of the conflict.

“There are millions of people who have lost their homes, or are in urgent need of medical care.
“We are hearing from development agencies, including Oxfam, that the situation facing refugees, in Syria and the wider region, is appalling. More than eight million people are now in desperate need of supplies.

“As a matter of urgency we should be increasing aid to Syria’s neighbours to help them support the families forced to seek refuge.

 “A huge amount of political energy has been focused on getting ready for a military strike.  If even just a fraction of those resources could be directed towards this humanitarian crisis, we could do much to reduce further suffering and loss of life."

Lucas also called for the perpetrators of chemical weapons attacks to be referred to the International Criminal Court.

“Crimes against humanity and international law have been committed.  Once there is evidence of responsibility for these appalling attacks, those responsible must be dealt with by the International Criminal Court.”

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