Staffan de Mistura
Last quote by Staffan de Mistura
Staffan de Mistura quotes
If you want to defeat Daesh, we need, even if it looks complicated, even if it looks remote, a political, inclusive, credible solution in Syria and that is the challenge that we are going to face in the next few weeks.
Where are the United States (on a political solution)? I can't tell you, because I don't know.
I can't tell you (if it will succeed), but we have to push with the momentum. Even a ceasefire cannot hold too long if there is no political (solution).
We will see the result of this in the coming days because it is important that the government doesn't have the alibi of saying 'I don't know who is the opposition.
We are trying to persuade the opposition to be as united as much as possible.
That is the agenda and we will not change it, otherwise we open up a Pandora's box.
It's going to be a challenge, it's not going to be easy.
That by itself ... would be a major achievement.
There should be sanctions because otherwise you cannot control this and you cannot go to the political talks, Astana or Geneva.
Many of them have gone to Idlib, which could be in theory the next Aleppo.
We have heard from the Russians more than once, and from Putin himself, that the last thing he wants is to see the Daesh people returning to the Russian Federation, those who came from there and were trained to fight there.
I myself have expressed horror at the idea that by Christmas we would have the final part of the so-called battle for Aleppo that could have ended up in massive destruction – no Aleppo left – and 200,000 refugees streaming toward Turkey.
How many more battles do we need before finally people sit around the table.
The writing on the wall looks as if eastern Aleppo's battle is virtually over.
Perhaps now is the time to actually look seriously at the possible renewal of looking at when how we can have political discussions, because there is an awareness that military victory is not peace because peace has to be won separately.
The plan is to meet some people around the team of President Trump.
Clearly, I cannot deny - this is a military acceleration and I can't tell you how long eastern Aleppo will last.
I would never underestimate an outgoing U.S. president as a lame duck. President Obama .... and Secretary of State John Kerry are very motivated to end the greatest humanitarian tragedy of this century that has played out during their time in office. It's about their legacy.
It could be tragic. It could be a new Vukovar.
The package is clear, Nusra needs to declare they are ready to go, or others can do on their behalf, and at the same time that there is a commitment by the (Syrian) government to respect the local administration. Let's separate the two things. Today we consider this a medical evacuation, or medical support. The next steps are part of a larger package that needs to be there.
Is this going to be the alibi for destroying the city?
The bottom line is: In a maximum of two months – two and a half months – the city of eastern Aleppo at this rate may be be totally destroyed ... and thousands of Syrians, not terrorists, will be killed.
But no incident, irrespective of whether it can be attributed or not, does justify what is going on in front of our own eyes: the unraveling of the cessation of hostilities and the simultaneous unleashing of unprecedented military violence affecting innocent civilians as well.
Everything hangs in the balance right now.
All we can expect from Aleppo if the Syrian government is intent on retaking it is ... a slow, grinding, street-by-street fight, over the course of months, if not years, whereby the ancient city will be almost completely destroyed.
Any sign of me resigning would be a signal that the international community is abandoning the Syrians, and we will not abandon the Syrians, and neither will you.
I am still convinced that we can turn the course of events. We have proven this more than once before.
The conflict in #Syria cannot be resolved militarily.
The cease-fire is in danger, is being seriously affected.
The convoy was the outcome of a long process of permission and preparations to assist isolated civilians.
Castello Road in the Russian-American agreement has a special status, that the convoys, which are ready, 40 trucks, 20 and 20, are ready and waiting for this, will be sealed and once they moved they will not be harassed, they will not be investigated, and they will be moving through that road all the way to eastern Aleppo.
Today calm appears to have prevailed across Hama, Latakia, Aleppo city and Rural Aleppo and Idlib, with only some allegations of sporadic and geographically isolated incidents.
I can tell you that there is no reference in this agreement on the detainees issue, which remains a very important issue, which I think needs to be addressed in a different context but needs to be addressed.
There is no doubt a significant drop in violence.
If they do succeed – and the UN as been actively involved in supporting those discussions – the conclusions could make – let's be frank – a major difference. One on the renewal, or relaunching, of cessation of hostilities, which in turn, would have a major impact on the humanitarian access.
After Daraya, we may have other Darayas.
Due to the lack of a pause, no humanitarian aid is reaching anywhere in Syria at the moment, except Deir al-Zor, and Aleppo is still, eastern Aleppo, besieged, and western Aleppo, in threat of becoming besieged.
Our plan is to collectively work out the operational details, and be ready for delivery as soon as possible.
I insist, on behalf of the UN Secretary General, to have a 48-hour pause in Aleppo. This would require some heavy lifting not only by Russia and the US, the two co-chairs, but also those who have influence on the ground.
We have a special UN and other organisation addressing that. But if it did take place, it is a war crime.
This round of talks have instead been overshadowed, let's be frank, by a substantial and indeed worrisome deterioration of the cessation of hostilities.
There is no reason that both of them which have been putting so much political capital in that success story and have a common interest in not seeing Syria ending up in another cycle of war should not be able to revitalise what they have created and which is still alive but barely.
Hence my appeal for a U.S.-Russian urgent initiative at the highest level, because the legacy of both President Obama and President Putin is linked to the success of what has been a unique initiative which started very well. It needs to end very well.
The perception is that it could collapse any time.
So far, 560,000 people have been reached between hard to reach areas and besieged areas. there has been modest but real progress, not enough to make us comfortable at all.
Well, first of all, I have the feeling that we have been able to overcome these two weeks without any walkouts, any drama, any delegitimisation and potentially we have a document that has been not refused by either side on what could be the understanding of principles, which then means, next time we leave the principals aside and then look at the political process.
I am expecting and hoping ... that the next round of talks will not be focusing on principles again - we have had enough of that - there are many valid points there, but we have to start focusing on the political process.
These are guiding principles. We are not getting into the details of what is the mother of all issues, the political transition, political process.
The rule of the game will be inclusiveness.
I thought it was a little unfair, didn't you?
All Syrians have rejected division (of Syria) and federalism can be discussed at the negotiations. From our side, when the Syrian people are ready to move in a certain direction, we will naturally agree to this.
We will hold preparatory meetings and then go into detail with each group separately.
We need 10 days' preparation. But the talks … can be successful if emergency aid continues and we get a ceasefire.
Tomorrow we test this.
We have been particularly talking about the issue of humanitarian, unhindered access to all besieged areas, not only by the government but also by the opposition and by ISIL.
I have good reasons to believe that they are actually considering this very seriously, and therefore to be in a position on, probably, Sunday, to actually start the discussion with them, in order to be able to proceed with the intra-Syrian talks.
Every time we are getting close to a real discussion, the humanitarian aspect sometimes gets even worse because there is an acceleration of military activity. So what we are going to do, and we already started, is linking the discussions in the conference with actual what we call confidence-building measures.
In Tehran I got the same assurance, that the tensions, which are unfortunately ongoing, are not going to be affecting neither the Vienna momentum nor the Geneva talks.
There are some indications that you must have been seeing… to indicate a quite clear political initiative during the week preceding the General Assembly. That is the right time to do it because the next real appointment is going to be the 21 September…for a high-level meeting on Syria.
You know very well and we know very well that approval does not mean delivery. So, there is a lot of actions that need to take place between approval and delivery, including the possibility of not being stopped at the last minute at a road block, including the fact of medicines not being pulled out.
The time is not yet mature for the official third round of the intra-Syrian talks.
We would like to appeal to the Turkish authorities in order to allow the flow of volunteers at least and their own equipment in order to be able to enter the city and contribute to a self defence operation.
If Kobani Ayn al-Arab falls, there will be close to 400 kilometres of the Turkish border to be basically under control (sic) of ISIL,out of the 900.
Thirty one percent means what? In real terms, in human being terms, 3,268 civilians during the past six months. Afghan civilians have been the casualties of this conflict.
Food speaks. Either the bag of wheat is reaching the farmer who is trying to develop food for agriculture or food for stability or food for work or food for a school, or it doesn't reach there, so it's very easy to check and we can check too. The secret is to be creative about that, in other words how to maximise that bag of wheat or that amount of money to make sure that it is going beyond that.