“Aleppo is now a synonym for hell”, outgoing UN chief tells press

Listen /

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (left) addresses a press conference, his last at United Nations headquarters, as his term of office draws to a close at the end of the year. At his side is his Spokesperson, Stéphane Dujarric. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

“The carnage in Syria remains a gaping hole in the global conscience and Aleppo is now a synonym for hell”, the outgoing UN Secretary-General has warned.

Ban Ki-moon made these remarks during his last end-of-year press conference on Friday.

He will step down on 1 January after ten years on the job.

Jocelyne Sambira reports.

It was with strongly worded statements that the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon delivered his final briefing to the press. 

He made three main points before taking reporters’ questions. 

The first was on Syria and how the world has failed its people. 

Reflecting on the “risk of genocide” in South Sudan, he called out the country’s leaders for “betraying their people” and urged the Security Council to take more “concerted action, including punitive measures.” 

And last, he made an appeal for continued support to the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, stating there was “no turning back”. 

Here’s Ban Ki-moon: 

“The carnage in Syria remains a gaping hole in the global conscience. Aleppo is now a synonym for hell. As I told the Security Council three days ago, we have collectively failed the people of Syria. Peace will only prevail when it is accompanied by compassion, justice and accountability for the abominable crimes we have seen. 

The outgoing UN chief also praised the press for reporting on the work of the United Nations describing himself as an “ally and defender” of the media. 

Jocelyne Sambira, United Nations. 

Duration: 1’14″