Procedure : 2013/2611(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : B7-0199/2013

Texts tabled :


Debates :

Votes :

PV 23/05/2013 - 13.7

Texts adopted :


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See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B7-0199/2013

to wind up the debate on the statement by the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

pursuant to Rule 110(2) of the Rules of Procedure

on the situation of Syrian refugees in neighbouring countries (2013/2611(RSP))

Charles Tannock, Geoffrey Van Orden on behalf of the ECR Group

European Parliament resolution on Situation of Syrian refugees in neighbouring countries (2013/2611(RSP))  

The European Parliament,

–   having regard to its previous resolutions on Syria,

–   having regard to its previous resolutions on refugees fleeing armed conflict,

–   having regard to the statement of the United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator of 18 April 2013,

–   having regard to the previous statements of the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy on Syria,

–   having regard to the Council’s previous conclusions on the current situation in Syria,

–   having regard to the Joint Communication of 25 May 2011 from the European Commission and the High Representative to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions entitled ‘A new Response to a Changing Neighbourhood’,

–   having regard to the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) Resolution of 3 August 2012 on the situation in Syria,

–   having regard to the UNGA Resolution on Human Rights in Syria of 22 November 2011,

–   having regard to UN Security Council resolutions 2042(2012) of 14 April and 2043(2012) of 21 April 2012,

–   having regard to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Resolution of 2 December 2011 on human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic,

–   having regard to the report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic submitted to the UNHCR on 23 November 2011,

–   having regard to the Council statement of 22 April 2013 on sanctions against Syria,

–   having regard to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948,

–   having regard to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) of 1966, to which Syria is party,

–   having regard to Rule 110(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A. whereas the unrest and bloodshed in Syria has now entered its third year;

B.  whereas the total number of registered Syrian refugees is now put at more than 1.2 million;

C. whereas there are still some 212 000 Syrian refugees awaiting registration by United Nations agencies;

D. whereas it is estimated that there will be up to 3.5 million Syrian refugees by the end of 2013, with 6.5 million people in need of humanitarian assistance inside the country;

E.  whereas President Assad has ignored countless calls by the international community to put an end to the horrific violence in Syria;

F.  whereas the High Commissioner has claimed that the Syrian conflict is much more than a humanitarian crisis and that it risks spreading across the region, escalating into a political, security and humanitarian disaster that would completely overwhelm international response capacity;

G. whereas the three countries most dramatically affected by the conflict and refugee outflow are Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey;

H. whereas Turkey has provided USD 750 million in direct assistance to more than 300 000 refugees;

I.   whereas Lebanon has received the greatest number of Syrian refugees, which could soon make up almost one quarter of its population;

J.   whereas the UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict has estimated that more than 600 000 children are refugees in the sub-region;

K. whereas thousands of Syrians are fleeing on a daily basis to neighbouring countries in search of safety and protection, only to remain vulnerable in refugee camps;

L.  whereas civil unrest and the Syrian authorities’ brutal repression of the Syrian people has dragged the country into a state of almost total civil war which in turn risks a wider regional conflict;

1.  Expresses grave concern at the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Syria and the implications for its neighbouring countries; expresses concern that the exodus of refugees from Syria continues to accelerate;

2.  Calls on the international community to unite in providing all possible assistance to support those displaced by the ongoing conflict in Syria, and to the neighbouring countries, NGOs and other organisations providing that support;

3.  Strongly condemns the use of violence by all those involved in the conflict in Syria;

4.  Deplores any use of violence, intimidation and torture from whatever quarter against men, women and children in Syria, and against those working to provide humanitarian and medical aid;

5.  Calls on the international community to redouble its efforts in contributing to the humanitarian response to the refugee crisis, including the provision of food, water and medical supplies;

6.  Expresses concern at the consequences for the wider region in terms of security and stability of the ongoing conflict within Syria and the humanitarian and refugee crisis;

7.  Calls for all actors in Syria to subscribe to the principles of human rights and democracy and to commit to bringing the conflict to a peaceful conclusion;

8.  Commends the response of the governments of neighbouring countries in providing humanitarian support to Syrian refugees; acknowledges that providing this support has put additional pressures on existing services and budgets in those countries; calls on the international community to support those countries affected;

9.  Notes that President Assad, as the constitutional and legal head of the Syrian state, bears ultimate responsibility for all actions carried out by the armed forces; urges President Assad to recognise the rejection of his regime by the Syrian people and to step aside in the best interests of his country and the unity of its people;

10. Shares the concerns raised by the United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator that ordinary people are paying the price for the failure to end the conflict;

11. Expresses grave concern at the fact that fighting, violence, incursions and other security incidents have spilt over the Syrian borders into neighbouring countries and at the consequences this has for those fleeing the conflict in Syria as well as for the residents of those neighbouring countries;

12. Commends Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey and Iraq for their generosity in offering vital sanctuary to those fleeing Syria; in recognising the pressure that this has placed on their resources, urges neighbouring countries to continue to keep their borders open;

13. Calls on all parties in Syria to ensure that humanitarian agencies can deliver life-saving aid effectively, safely, fully and without impediment in line with their obligations under international humanitarian law; recognises that this will ease the pressure on those neighbouring countries into which Syrian refugees are fleeing to escape the conflict;

14. Notes the efforts of Joint Special Representative Brahimi in seeking to secure a peaceful settlement to the Syrian conflict;

15. Recognises the urgent need to focus international and regional efforts in order to solve the Syrian crisis; continues to urge all members of the UN Security Council (UNSC) to uphold their responsibilities regarding the Syrian crisis; urges all countries active in promoting a solution to the crisis to support these efforts; believes that this process should be based on the principles included in the Geneva communiqué of 30 June 2012 and on UNSC Resolution 2042;

16. Welcomes the fact that the EU has committed almost EUR 800 million in humanitarian and non-humanitarian assistance to Syrians inside and outside Syria; notes that the EU is the largest humanitarian donor for the Syrian crisis;

17. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the governments and parliaments of the Member States, the Secretary General of the Arab League, the Government and Parliament of the Syrian Arab Republic, and the governments and parliaments of those countries neighbouring Syria.


Last updated: 21 May 2013Legal notice