What will it take for the world to say enough?

Friday, September 22, 2017

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Dear Editor,

Darkness and terror continues to reign in our world and sometimes there is nothing to smile about.

The haunting picture of a young Syrian boy rescued from a partially destroyed building in Aleppo has disturbed many of us. The image of a dazed-looking boy has been etched in our memories and will be with us for a long time. The Syrian war has gone on now for over five years and yet there is no end in sight. The United Nations has been unable to get both sides of the conflict to commit in guaranteeing safe passage for convoys with food and medicine to reach those who are suffering in a conflict which has displaced millions of Syrians and have contributed immensely to the international refugee crisis. The rules of the Geneva Conventions have been flouted by all warring parties. The Geneva Convention's Humanitarian Law of Armed Conflicts exists to provide minimum protection, standards of humane treatment, and fundamental guarantees of respect to individuals who become victims of armed conflicts.

It is rather disturbing that, despite the many wars the world has witnessed, we have not learned the lessons from armed conflicts. It is unfortunate that grown men, many of whom are refereed to global statesmen, have allowed their egos and pride to get in the way of them arriving at a solution for the humanitarian crisis. Women and children are more at risk and vulnerable in times of war.

Sadly, just recently a hospital operated by the Doctors Without Borders in northern Yemen was bombed by a Saudi Arabia coalition killing a number of children. The United Nations certainly has its hands full as wars and rumours of wars are all across the planet. These international conflicts have frustrated the United Nations' efforts to fulfil its humanitarian mandate while the images of the dying and injured continue to affect our psyche.

It is obvious that diplomacy has failed to bring to an end the hostilities in Syria and elsewhere. The world today is very much interconnected, and what happens in one part of the world will ultimately have consequences for people thousands of miles away. What will it take to stir the collective consciousness of our global leaders into action? What will it take for the world to wake up and say enough is enough?

Wayne Campbell






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