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Saudi Arabia Leads an International Effort to Save Aleppo | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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A boy stands amid the damage in the rebel-held besieged al-Shaar neighborhood of Aleppo, Syria November 23, 2016. REUTERS/Abdalrhman Ismail

Riyadh, Ankara- Saudi Arabia leads U.N. efforts to save the eastern parts of Aleppo, which have been fiercely pounded by regime forces and its allies backed by Russian warplanes.

Permanent Representative of Saudi Arabia to the United Nations, Abdallah al-Mouallimi told Asharq Al-Awsat on Sunday that his country is currently managing feverish efforts in the corridors of the U.N. to agree with friendly and brotherly states on a resolution concerning the situation in Syria.

Al-Mouallimi said he expected the U.N. to adopt the resolution and to issue it soon.

In a telephone conversation with Asharq Al-Awsat from New York, the Saudi diplomat said: “Representatives of Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the UAE and Turkey had clearly invited the U.N. to hold an urgent session on the situation in Syria and the latest developments there because we touched an insistent need to hold such a session.”

In Ankara, diplomatic sources said that the latest efforts conducted by the four states were part of an attempt to save the deteriorating situation in Aleppo and to push the international community to play a more effective role in reaching a ceasefire there.

Turkish sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that many Syrians, whether those besieged in Aleppo or the opposition factions, rely to a great extent on the efforts of the three Gulf States and Turkey.

The sources said that despite the fact that U.N. efforts conducted in the past did not achieve much in the Syrian file, the three Gulf States and Turkey, which possess a weight in the Syrian crisis, could work with other parties to guarantee a ceasefire and secure the delivery of aid.

On Saturday, Representatives of the three Gulf States and Turkey have called for an emergency special session of the U.N. General Assembly on the alarming situation in Syria.

In a joint statement, the representatives said: “We have seen in recent weeks, heavy military aggression in Aleppo and its neighboring areas with severe humanitarian consequences. Reports indicate that hundreds of civilians have been killed, injured or affected by the relentless attack in east of Aleppo.”

The statement therefore added that the alarming humanitarian situation in Aleppo calls for convening an emergency special session of the U.N. General Assembly to make recommendations on matters relating to peace and global security in the absence of the Security Council’s ability to do so because of the lack of consensus.

Meanwhile, Axel van Trotsenburg, the World Bank’s Vice President of Development Finance told Asharq Al-Awsat there is “a move to allocate $1 billion for the reconstruction of Syria after reaching permanent peace there.”