Ireland pushes for peace in Syria
2015-10-15 15:44:31 -
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- Minister of State Dara Murphy also calls for stronger EU-Africa relations

By Chinedu Onyejelem

 

The Irish Government is determined to push for a peaceful resolution to the Syrian crisis, Metro Éireann has heard.

 

Speaking at a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Luxembourg, where a series of pressing issues involving Libya, Syria, migration and EU relations with African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries were discussed recently, Minister of State for European Affairs Dara Murphy said Ireland would support genuine efforts to solve the issues.

 

“Ireland and our EU partners sent a clear message that we will continue to put all of our political weight, actively and effectively, behind UN-led international efforts to find a political solution to the conflict in Syria, and I call on regional and international partners to do likewise,” said Minister Murphy, who added that “the protection of civilians” is of the utmost priority for the international community.

 

He also called on both the Syrian government and IS insurgents to stop their arbitrary assault on civilians, tens of thousands of whom have fled to Europe in recent months. 

 

“I reiterate Ireland’s condemnation of the unacceptable and indiscriminate attack that the Syrian regime continues to commit against its own people, and the atrocities perpetrated by Daesh and other terrorist groups against all civilians, including the enslavement of women and girls and the persecution of Christians and other religious and ethnic minorities.”

 

Minister Murphy said he expressed the feelings of Irish people on the situation in Libya and the migration crisis to his EU colleagues.

 

“I welcome the political agreement in Libya which has been proposed by the UN, and I urge all parties to quickly approve and support this deal so that Libya can take the path of peace and prosperity,” he added.

 

While urging for solution to the current migration crisis, the minister emphasised that Europe must also respect the rights of those who are seeking protection at its borders.

 

“The crises in Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya are at the very heart of the forced displacement which has led to the migration crisis,” he said. “Ireland and our EU partners reiterated our commitment to urgently addressing the conflict, political instability, lack of socio-economic development and poor governance which are the root causes of refugee flows.

 

“The protection of the human rights of those seeking international protection must be central to the EU’s approach to the migration issue.”

 

Minister Murphy also called for a new ACP-EU Partnership Agreement that would better reflect today’s world when the current pact expires in 2020.

 

“Ireland has long placed a high priority on our relations with the ACP countries, which is manifested through our aid programme and our Africa strategy,” he said. “The Cotonou Agreement has served the partnership well and now is the time to reflect on how the relationship can evolve and develop into a framework more suited to the world we live in today and to new challenges as they emerge.”

TAGS : Syria IS insurgents Afghanistan Iraq Libya migration crisis African countries Caribbean countries Pacific countries ACP
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