UNITED NATIONS : UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and International Committee of the Red Cross President Peter Maurer Saturday issued an “unprecedented joint warning” for states to stop conflicts, respect international law and take “urgent action” to address human suffering and insecurity.
“In the face of blatant inhumanity, the world has responded with disturbing paralysis,” the secretary-general said in a statement. “This flouts the very raison d’être of the United Nations.” They also called for states to rein in armed groups and hold them accountable for abuses, and to stop the use of heavy weapons in populated areas. The two leaders stressed the importance of respect for international humanitarian law in order to stem the chaos and prevent further instability. 
They called on States to take the following urgent actions:
- Redouble efforts to find sustainable solutions to conflictsand take concrete steps to that effect.
- Individually and collectively, use every means to wieldinfluence over parties to armed conflict to respect the law, includingcarrying out effective investigations into breaches of international humanitarianlaw, holding perpetrators accountable, and developing concrete mechanismsto improve compliance.
- Condemn those who commit serious violations of international humanitarian law, such as deliberate attacks on civilians and civilian infrastructure.
- Ensure unhindered access to medical and humanitarian missions and protect medical and humanitarian workers and facilities.           
- Protect and assist internally displaced people and refugees while they are fleeing insecurity, and help them to find long-term solutions, while supporting host countries and communities.
- Stop the use of heavy explosive weapons in populated areas.
“Rarely before have we witnessed so many people on the move, so much instability, so much suffering,” Maurer said. “In armed conflicts in Afghanistan, Iraq, Nigeria, South Sudan, Syria, Yemen, and elsewhere, combatants are defying humanity’s most fundamental norms. Every day, we hear of civilians being killed and wounded in violation of the basic rules of international humanitarian law, and with total impunity. Instability is spreading. Suffering is growing. No country can remain untouched.”
Some sixty million people around the world have been displaced from their homes because of conflict and violence - the highest figure since the Second World War. Conflicts have become more protracted, meaning that many displaced people face years away from their homes, communities and livelihoods.
“The world must reaffirm its humanity and uphold its commitments under international humanitarian law,” Ban said. “Today we speak with one voice to urge all States to take immediate, concrete steps to ease the plight of civilians.”