PA, UNFPA discuss means to overcome crisis' negative effects on development

DAMASCUS, (S.T)_The Syrian people are now required to shoulder their responsibility in conveying the message of peace against the fierce war targeting their unity, history, present and future.

People's Assembly Speaker's remarks came in the opening ceremony of a workshop titled "Population and Development Under Current Circumstances" .The workshop has convened at al-Sham Hotel by the PA in cooperation with  the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).

SANA quoted PA Speaker  Mohammad Jihad al-Lahham as saying:" I'm sure that the Syrian people will live up to expectations as regards  overcoming  the ongoing crisis in their homeland. They are able to cooperate with their state to halt this war and to beat  its negative impacts."

He noted that the Syrian society, over the past 7000 years, has been a living example of co-existence and tolerance in confronting seditions which the west tried and still trying  to foment in our society.    

Lahham asserted the necessity for  serious cooperation between civil and official institutions.

"encouraging individuals' capabilities to overcome the obstacles that face development process in Syria through restoring stability, constructing damaged areas and returning displaced people to their houses are a must," underlined Laham.

The government is cooperating with all parties concerned to notch up this goal," said the PA Speaker.

He added that reports on population and development indicate that Syria was making progress towards achieving the third millennium and the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) goals before the events.

"Negatively, all sectors were affected by the crisis and caused huge damage to the infrastructure, human resources and development basics," said the Speaker.

He clarified that the international community hasn't committed to the recommendations adopted by the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) related to supporting Syria and alleviating the impact of current events on citizens.

"Some regional and western countries imposed economic sanctions against the Syrian people's livelihood ,and supplied the terrorist gangs with weapons as well as facilitated smuggling mercenaries and takfiris into Syria to kill the Syrian people and undermine the state components," said al-Lahham.

He called for finding appropriate means to overcome the economic and social consequences of the crisis, citing that the newly-formed committees in the PA and the executive authority are working together to reach solutions to citizens' cases.  

On the other hand, the Speaker stressed that the national reconciliation committee will continue its work across Syria in cooperation with civil organisations and the Ministry of State for the National Reconciliation Affairs, to restore communication among all spectrums of the Syrian society.

For his part, the UNFPA's  Assistant Representative in Syria, Omar Ballan, said that the Fund is coordinating with all governmental and non-governmental parties and the UN organizations to implement annual plans, including contributing  in meeting the people's needs, particularly those affected by the current crisis.

"The People's Assembly can play  a prominent role in defining the needs and facilitating access to affected areas, in addition to following up and evaluating relevant programs," said Ballan.

He noted that the plan prepared in coordination with the Syrian government according to the UN General Assembly aims at supporting the government's efforts to deliver humanitarian aid to the affected people.

According to the participants' speeches, the governmental financial aid amounted up to scores of SP millions submitted to the NOGs that offer direct services to the affected people.

A number of MPs in addition to representatives of the Planning and International Cooperation Commission and the ministries of Local Administration, Social Affairs and Labor, Health, Education and NGOs and the Syrian Arab Red Crescent attended the workshop.