Syrian Coalition Official: Assad Ineligible to Issue Amnesty Given his Long Litany of War Crimes
A Syrian Coalition official lampooned the legislative decree issued recently by the Assad regime as he stressed that the move was an attempt by Assad to "convince himself that he has regained his legitimacy to rule.”
Yasser al-Farhan, member of the Coalition’s political committee, said that “it is ridiculous how Bashar al-Assad, who is involved in an endless litany of war crimes, genocide, mass killings, torture, and the displacement of millions of civilians, issues an amnesty for army defectors.”
Farhan pointed out that defectors from Assad’s army did not commit a punishable offense, and added: "Those defectors refused to implement Assad’s orders to shoot peaceful demonstrators."
“By issuing the so-called amnesty, Assad is trying to substantiate the accusations against the army defectors, which is unacceptable. The issuance of a general amnesty means a confession of a crime punishable by the law. An amnesty, therefore, is issued to cancel or mitigate the punishment without affecting the criminal characterization of the offender. Assad’s latest move cannot be recognized by the spirit and philosophy of justice which gives the FSA fighters the right to defend themselves and their people."
Farhan warned army defectors against falling into this trap and handing themselves over to the regime. "It is worth noting the fact that the legislative decree, besides being issued by an authority that lacks legitimacy, excludes perpetrators of ‘terrorist crimes.’ The Assad regime has framed all its opponents as terrorists, including actors, artists and writers.”
Farhan pointed out that the judiciary in Syria is politicized and subject to the orders of the security and intelligence services. He added: “This decree will remain a dead letter. The regime issued the decree for purely political purposes and to give the impression that it is regaining its control on the country." (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)