Vice-president of the Syrian Coalition Muwaffaq Nyrabiya said that there is now no suitable climate for a political process in Syria as the Assad regime and its allies carry on with the slaughter of Syrian civilians.
According to the Syrian Coalition’s media office, at least 70 people, including 7 children and 4 women, were killed on Wednesday in attacks by the Assad regime and its allies in nearly 49 areas across Syria. The office, which relies on sources and activists inside Syria to gather information, said that these figures do not cover areas controlled by Alnusra Front or ISIS, which were excluded from the cessation of hostilities agreement declared in January 27 of this year.
Civil defense teams in the town of Douma in Rural Damascus said three civilians were killed in artillery shelling by regime forces on the rebel-held Damascus suburb on Wednesday. The attack also left many civilians injured, mostly children.
Nyrabiya pointed out that the continued silence over such attacks by the Assad regime and its allies has further complicated the conflict and allowed ISIS to grow and fester in Syria and the region. Main state actors, meanwhile, continue to shirk their responsibilities towards the tragedy unfolding in Syria, completely unmindful of the disastrous consequences of the continued violations of the cessation of hostilities agreement by the regime and its allies, Nyrabiya stressed.
Nyrabiya called upon the international community to break its silence and take real and urgent action against repeated violations of the truce agreement which stalled the political process. Such violations represent a continuation of the criminal policies the Assad regime and its allies have been employing against civilians for over five years, Nyrabiya added. By continuing the deliberate targeting of civilians, Nyrabiya noted, the Assad regime and its allies use civilians as a bargaining chip in the negotiations on Assad’s fate.
Meanwhile, the United Nations envoy to Syria said that the next round of the intra-Syrian talks must be well prepared “to ensure the possibility of moving forward with the decisive outcome of a political transition in August.”
“Bottom line, I’m still aiming – we are aiming at – within July, but not at any cost and not without guarantees,” Staffan de Mistura, the UN Special Envoy for Syria, told the press at the conclusion of closed consultations with the Security Council in New York on Wednesday.
De Mistura continued that he was “aiming at August as the period where we should be seeing something concrete. So that in September we take stock.”
The UN envoy stressed the need for a political transition in Syria to win the battle against terrorism.
De Mistura added that the terrorist attacks in Istanbul should act as “a reminder to everyone in the Council that fighting terrorism is a priority and should be considered constantly a priority…However, winning – not only fighting - terrorism in Syria and Iraq too, but particularly in Syria, would require a political transition because that’s the way through which we take away the water from those who are swimming in the terrorist environment.” (Source: Syrian Coalition + Agencies)
President of the Syrian Coalition Anas Alabdah said that military escalation by the Assad regime and its allies has disrupted the political process in Syria. He noted that the Assad regime continues to defy UN Security Council resolution 2254.
At a meeting with Danish Foreign Minister Kristian Jensen in the Turkish city of Gaziantep on Wednesday, Alabdah ruled out success of any political approach while the Assad regime carries on with its systematic crimes against the Syrian people.
The two sides discussed the latest developments in the political process and the situation on the ground in Syria. Alabdah raised the Assad regime’s military escalation and its targeting of civilians across Syria, especially in in Aleppo, Deir Ezzor, Damascus and Idlib.
The meeting also discussed the situation of Syrian refugees in camps in neighboring countries. Alabdah highlighted the tragic humanitarian conditions in the Alrukban IDP camp near the Jordanian border, calling upon the Danish FM to help provide humanitarian support for civilians living in the camp.
Alabdah thanked the government and people of Denmark for the support Denmark has so far provided for the Syrian people. (Source: Syrian Coalition)
The Syrian Coalition condemned the heinous terrorist attack that targeted Ataturk International Airport in Istanbul on Tuesday evening.
In a statement released on Wednesday, the Syrian Coalition offered its condolences to the families of the victims and wished the wounded a speedy recovery. It reiterated that it stands in solidarity with Turkey in the fight against terrorism and terrorists targeting its security and stability.
The Coalition stressed that the Syrian people are best placed to understand the awful experience victims of terrorism have gone through as they themselves have been the victims of the most heinous crimes perpetrated by the Assad regime and its allies for over five years.
The Assad regime’s policies have enabled terror groups to grow and fester in Syria and the region and to spread to the rest of the world.
Istanbul Governor Vasip Şahin said at least 41 people were killed and over 239 injured in the attack on Istanbul's Ataturk airport on Tuesday. An attacker opened fire using an AK-47 assault rifle at the international terminal before detonating their vest.
Governor Şahin said law enforcement believes three militants blew themselves up at the entrance to the terminal at the airport after police had fired at them. (Source: Syrian Coalition)
The Syrian Coalition condemned the criminal terrorist attacks targeting civilians in the Lebanese town of Alqaa’. The Coalition expressed deep condolences to the families of the victims and wished the wounded a speedy recovery.
In a statement released on Tuesday, the Syrian Coalition called upon the Lebanese authorities to ensure the safety of Syrian refugees in Lebanon and prevent any revenge attacks against them.
The Coalition said that the Syrian people know very well the impact of terrorist attacks, especially against civilians. The Syrian people have long endured the crimes of the Assad regime and the militias fighting alongside it. They have also been suffering at the hands of terrorist groups that would not have grown or spread to the region and beyond had it not been for the policies of the Assad regime. (Source: Syrian Coalition)
Member of the opposition’s High Negotiations Committee (HNC) Basma Qadamani called on the European Union to impose sanctions on Russian companies involved in the delivery of arms shipments to the Assad's regime which uses them to indiscriminately bomb liberated areas across Syria.
Following a meeting with the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini and EU officials in Brussels on Monday, Qadamani said: “Any possible lifting of the EU sanctions on Russia will be understood by the Kremlin and Bashar al-Assad as a gesture allowing them to return to the international arena."
Qadamani was referring to the sanctions the EU imposed on Russia in connection with the crisis in Ukraine, expressing surprise at hints made by some EU officials who considered Syria as less important than Ukraine.
Qadamani, who did not specify the names Russian companies that should be sanctioned, stressed that the interests of Europe in Syria are now at stake.
Qadamani pointed out that the Assad regime has so far refused to engage in the “technical discussions” in Geneva. She added that the HNC is putting the final touches on a new document outlining the opposition’s vision for political transition in Syria. The HNC will submit the document to the UN. Qadamani stressed that no concessions have been made in the document regarding the fate of Bashar al-Assad.
Qadamani ruled out the inclusion of the Democratic Union Party (PYD) into the HNC, adding that the PYD militias are fighting the Free Syrian Army on various fronts across Syria and have allowed regime forces to make progress against the FSA.
Qadamani noted that the panic caused by the UK’s vote last week to leave the European Union has made the bloc more determined to play a bigger role in Syria. (Source: Syrian Coalition + Agencies)
President of the Syrian Coalition Anas Alabdah reaffirmed the Coalition’s longstanding principles regarding a political solution in Syria. He reiterated that Bashar al-Assad and his clique whose hands are stained with the blood of hundreds of thousands of Syrians must not and will not have any role in any future political solution or transitional period in Syria.
In a statement released on Monday, Alabdah said: “The Syrian Coalition participated in the Riyadh conference with this position in mind; a position that is fully representative of the will of the FSA and rebel fighters and consistent with the aspirations of the Syrian people across Syria and abroad.”
“The Syrian Coalition, therefore, rejects any initiative designed to keep the fate of the Syrian people in the hands of murderers or any proposal aimed to preserve the tyrannical murderous regime that has oppressed the Syrian people for decades,” Alabdah added.
“The Syrian Coalition will not accept the rehabilitation of the Assad regime or preserving its head or any of its pillars as part of any solution.”
Alabdah went on to say: “Our recent meeting with other Syrian opposition bodies came out of our firm belief in the need to reach out to all components of the Syrian society so long as this process does not contradict the principles and goals of the Syrian revolution.”
Alabdah renewed the Syrian Coalition’s condemnation of the Russian aggression on Syria and Russia’s unholy alliance with the Assad regime and the Iranian-backed militias. “Any attempts to break the will of the Syrian people, whether by regional or international parties, will be doomed to fail and crumble at the feet of the great Syrian people who have made an irreversible final decision to regain their freedom,” he stressed. (Source: Syrian Coalition)
Vice-president of the Syrian Coalition Muwaffaq Nyrabiya said that the reluctance of the United Nations to take a firm stance on ongoing violations by the Assad regime and its allies seriously threatens to undermine the entire political process. This reluctance has also caused increased suffering for the Syrian people and impeded counter terrorism efforts in Syria and the region.
The Assad regime continues to defy United Nations resolutions, encouraged by the UN failure to shoulder its responsibilities in Syria, Nyrabiya said. He stressed that the United Nations should consider pursuing a new approach to the solution in Syria which is firmer, stricter and one that meets the aspirations of the Syrian people.
"Today nobody can set a date for a new round of negotiations in Geneva as a result of the continued massacres and violations committed by the Assad regime and its allies and its refusal to implement the humanitarian provisions set out in the UN Security Council resolution 2254 and the cessation of hostilities agreement,” Nyrabiya said.
Meanwhile, the local council of Daraya, a rebel-held district in rural Damascus which has been under siege by regime forces for over three years, said on Monday that regime forces have dropped nearly 560 barrel bombs during the past 20 days.
The Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) said that at least 12,679 detainees have died under torture in Syria since the revolution began in March 2011. According to the rights group, 99% of the victims were killed at the hands of regime forces and their allies.
In a report released on Monday, SNHR pointed out that torture of detainees is still practiced on a large scale in Syria, adding that the severity of torture and the number of the victims of torture in Syria are the highest in the world. The rights group noted that ensuring victims of the regime’s policy of torture are well documented is aimed to help see perpetrators of these violations held accountable one day. (Source: Syrian Coalition)
Syrian activists have launched an online campaign titled “Stop Russia’s Terror" to draw attention to Russia’s ongoing crimes against the Syrian people.
Organizers of the campaign called for shedding light on Russia’s aggression on Syria through posting photos and videos showing Russia’s atrocities in Syria on social media sites. They also called for adding Russia and its president Vladimir Putin to international lists of terrorists and war criminals.
Since its military intervention in Syria in late September 2015, Russia has been violating international laws through the use of internationally banned weapons, most notably cluster, phosphorous and incendiary bombs, against Syrian civilians. According to figures compiled by the Syrian Coalition’s media office, over 150 populated areas across Syria have been affected by Russia’s brutal attacks.
Russian forces have also committed many massacres in Syria, particularly in Aleppo. At least 2,000 people, including 452 children and 200 women, have been killed in Russian attacks on the rebel-held areas since September 30.
At least 90 civilians were killed and many more wounded in Russian airstrikes on the town of Alqouriyah in rural Deir Ezzor on Saturday. Russian air force used cluster munitions in the attacks. Two children were also killed in Russian airstrikes on the nearby town of Almaiyadin on Sunday.
The Syrian Coalition condemned the massacre in Alqouriyah, stressing that Russia and the Assad regime are deliberately targeting civilians seeing in them easy targets after the Russian intervention has failed to tip the balance on the ground in Assad’s favor.
The Coalition denounced the international community’s complete inaction over atrocious crimes committed by the Assad regime and Russia in Syria. The Coalition stressed that continued disregard for the blood of the Syrian people is an absolute disgrace on the international community which claims to respect and defend human rights. (Source: Syrian Coalition)
Vice-president of the Syrian Coalition Muwaffaq Nyrabia said that the United Nations’ request for unconditional unhindered implementation of a plan for the delivery of humanitarian aid to besieged areas in July is an important step on the road to the full implementation of international resolutions on Syria.
The UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Stephen O'Brien on Friday told the UN Security Council that the UN has submitted the July access plan to the Assad regime on 19 June, requesting access to over 1.2 million beneficiaries in 35 besieged, hard-to-reach and cross-line priority locations.
The UN request that the Assad regime should allow to the implementation of the access plan for the month of July is consistent with the UN Security Council resolution 2254 which stressed that humanitarian issues must not be subject to negotiations, Nyrabia said.
Nyrabia expressed hope that the delivery of humanitarian aid; stopping the Russian bombardment of Aleppo with incendiary bombs; putting an end to the Assad regime’s violations; and releasing detainees in the prisons of the Assad regime will pave the way for the resumption of negotiations next month in Geneva.
The UN special envoy to Syria, Staffan de Mistura, on Thursday said that chances of resuming the Geneva negotiations depend on the delivery of greater amounts of humanitarian aid to besieged areas across Syria and on fewer violations of the truce agreement.
Nyrabia reiterated support for the opposition’s High Negotiations Committee (HNC), adding that the Syrian people place their hopes on reaching a political solution that puts an end to their suffering and achieve their aspirations.
The Syrian Coalition, rebel and FSA groups, representatives of the National Coordination Commission, and many independent national figures made it clear they will remain united behind the HNC and do whatever possible to support the opposition’s negotiation delegation difficult mission in Geneva, Nyrabia added.
The Syrian Coalition mourned the death of journalist Khaled Alissa. Alissa was pronounced dead at a Turkish hospital on Friday of wounds he sustained in an assassination attempt along with fellow journalist Hadi Alabdullah in Aleppo on June 17.
The Syrian Coalition’s media office offered its deep condolences to the family and friends of Alissa, praising the tremendous courage and heroism he demonstrated since the start of the revolution. Alissa sacrificed his life trying to document the crimes of the Assad regime against the Syrian people and to convey the truth to the world.
Alissa, who was born in the town of Kafranbel in rural Idlib in 1992, was severely wounded in an explosion of an IED that was planted in front of his house in the neighborhood of Alshaa’r in Aleppo on June 17 along with his fellow journalist Hadi Alabdullah. They were later moved to Turkey for treatment. Alabdullah is still at hospital recovering from wounds he sustained in the attack. The Coalition wished Alabdullah a speedy recovery.
The Coalition pointed out that Alissa and Alabdullah risked their lives and faced extraordinary difficulties on multiple occasions. They were injured many times while documenting the crimes of the Assad regime and its allies, which did not prevent them from carrying out the task they set out to do. On June 14, three days before the assassination attempt, they were injured in a barrel bomb attack on Aleppo.
The Coalition said the struggle for freedom will continue no matter what it takes. Those criminals whose hands are stained with the blood of the Syrian people will one day be held to account, the Coalition added. (Source: Syrian Coalition)