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UN S-G and ERC Amos demand cessation of hostilities

08 Apr 2011


Some migrant workers have set up stalls at Salloum, selling basic items. Credit: IRIN/Kate Thomas
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and ERC Amos call for an immediate temporary end to hostilities in Libya to allow humanitarian actors access to people in need.

On 7 April 2011, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon reiterated his call on the Government of Libya to end violence and armed attacks against civilians. The UN Secretary-General and ERC Valerie Amos both called for an immediate temporary termination of hostilities in Libya to allow access for humanitarian assistance.

“Now is a time when people’s ability to move is a life or death matter,” said ERC Amos in a statement on 6 April. “The United Nations has supplies at the ready – a temporary cessation of hostilities would allow us to get those supplies to people who desperately need them.”

The United Nations and the humanitarian community were able to deliver life-saving humanitarian aid through a World Food Programme-chartered ship which docked at Misrata port on 7 April. The ship contained a month’s worth of medical supplies from the World Health Organization and the United Nations Children’s Fund for 50,000 people and food for 40,000 people, as well as toys and supplies for children.

However, access is still a problem and reports indicate an ongoing urgent need for medical supplies and personnel, civilian protection, potable water, food and other supplies in Misrata and surrounding areas. Landmines, abandoned munitions and unexploded ordnances continue to pose a serious threat to civilians and children in particular.

According to the International Organization for Migration and the United Nations Refugee Agency, over 450,000 people have left Libya, mainly for Tunisia and Egypt. Over 14,000 people remain stranded at camps in neighbouring countries. The $310 million Flash Appeal for the Libya Crisis is currently only 39 per cent funded, with $120 million committed and $1.4 million in pledges.

More>> OCHA Situation Report #22