The Syrian Coalition held a teleconference with leadership of the local councils in the districts of Waer in Homs and Barzah and Qaboun in Damascus on Friday. The two sides discussed the situation of the people displaced from these areas to rural Idlib and rural Aleppo.
Residents of Barzah, Qaboun and Waer districts have been recently displaced to northern Syria through forced displacements operations carried out by the Assad regime following large-scale military operations using various types of weapons against civilians and public facilities.
Secretary-General of the Syrian Coalition Nazir Hakim stressed the need to utilize the resources available to the Coalition and its institutions to help those who have been displaced from their homes "overcome the critical stage they are going through and achieve the Coalition and the local councils’ common goal to relieve the displaced and alleviate the pressure on them."
Hakim also called for utilizing the capabilities as well as the academic and professional qualifications from all specialties available among the displaced people themselves. He also stressed the need for combined efforts between the Coalition’s qualified staff and international organizations to alleviate the suffering of displaced people.
Moreover, Hakim emphasized the need for a comprehensive plan to ensure effective economic power through the utilization of available resources and capacities of the displaced to overcome the difficulties currently experienced by the IDPs and civilians living in the liberated areas.
Mohammed Yahya Maktabi, Secretary of the Coalition’s political committee, said that the Syrian people have been subjected to the most heinous crimes by the Assad regime and its allies. “The Syrian people were not fought with weapons, destruction and forced displacement from their homes only, but also with health and food issues by the Assad regime and its militias.”
Head of the local council in Qaboun outlined the difficulties civilians are facing in Idlib province and the crimes being committed against them by the Assad regime.
Participants in the meeting also agreed to strengthen communication with the displaced people to convey their voices to friends of the Syrian people, the United Nations, and international organizations. Moreover, the participants agreed to coordinate efforts with the Syrian Interim Government (SIG) to meet the needs of the IDPs. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
President of the Syrian Coalition Riad Seif called on the friendly countries to support efforts by the Coalition and its institutions to fill the power vacuum in and govern the liberated areas.
Seif was speaking at a meeting with the British envoy to Syria Gareth Bayley and Danish envoy Ivan Nelson on Thursday.
Seif said that the work of the Coalition and its institutions, especially the Syrian Interim Government (SIG) and Assistance Coordination Unit (ACU) as well as the local councils and the credit fund will bring considerable benefits to the Syrian people, especially those who are suffering in the liberated areas after the Assad regime destroyed all forms of life in these areas.
Saif pointed out that support from and solidarity shown by friendly countries "gives us hope that the Syrian people will be able to govern themselves."
For their parts, the British and Danish envoys praised efforts being made by the Coalition and SIG and welcomed the paper laid out during a panel discussion the Coalition has organized on Raqqa. It was agreed a meeting between the Coalition and donors will be held to establish joint working mechanisms. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
A fierce onslaught by the Assad regime forces and Iranian-backed militias launched in Dara’a city in early June has so far failed to make any progress despite being supported by intense Russian airstrikes.
The FSA fighters defending the city have held their ground despite the use by the regime and allies of internationally banned weapons, such as cluster bombs and incendiary napalm in the bombing of the liberated parts of the city. The relentless bombardment on Dara’a have killed and wounded scores of civilians and forced thousands more to flee towards the Jordanian border.
According to the FSA Albunyan Almarsous operations room, the FSA fighters have killed about 350 pro-regime militants, including 100 officers of different ranks, more than 29 militants of the Hezbollah militias and two militants of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards.
According to figures issued by the operations room covering the period from mid-February to June 28, the FSA fighters still control around 90 percent of the Manshiya strategic district.
The FSA fighters also said they have shot down two reconnaissance airplanes, blown up 30 tunnels dug by regime forces and destroyed 20 tanks and dozens of armored vehicles belonging to regime forces. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department + Smart News Network)
A delegation of the Syrian Coalition headed by President Riad Seif on Friday toured the liberated areas in Syria’s north to check on the situation on the ground. The delegation included head of the Syrian Interim Government (SIG) Jawad Abu Hatab, head of the Coalition’s media department Ahmad Ramadan, and a number of SIG officials.
President Seif and the accompanying delegation looked at the facilitations being offered for Syrian refugees who are leaving Turkey to Syria for the Eid Al-Fitr holidays through Bab al-Salama border crossing. The delegation also visited IDPs camps near the Turkish border and spoke to people about the difficulties they are facing.
The delegation met with heads of the local councils in northern Syria and with the Syrian Kurdish Tribal Council. President Seif congratulated them on the occasion of Eid al-Fitr as he stressed the need for coordination among all institutions of the revolution to provide services to the civilian population in the liberated areas and alleviate the suffering being caused by Assad and his allies.
President Seif also stressed the need to unify the revolutionary military groups into a single body under the banner of a national army to defend the Syrian people and their rights.
The Coalition’s delegation also visited colleges of the University of Aleppo, a branch of the Institute for the Preparation of Teachers, and SIG’s headquarters in the town of Azaz.
President Seif pointed out that the Syrian revolution will continue until the Syrian people’s demands for freedom and dignity are achieved and the tyranny the Assad regime has practiced against the Syrian people since the 1970s comes to an end. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
The presidential and political bodies of the Syrian Coalition on Thursday met with a delegation of British diplomats in charge of the Syrian file in a number of neighboring countries. The two sides discussed the latest political and field developments in Syria.
President of the Syrian Coalition Riad Seif talked about the need to support the Syrian Interim Government (SIG) to be able to provide services to civilians in the liberated areas. Seif also called for empowering SIG to administer the liberated areas and restore security and stability to make possible the return of refugees to their homes.
SIG has developed a comprehensive plan to administer the liberated areas and rehabilitate state institutions, including the judiciary and the police, Hakim said, adding that the plan prioritizes the provision of essential services such as health and education.
Secretary-General of the Syrian Coalition Nazir Hakim said that the task of administering the city of Raqqa must be assigned to SIG, stressing that the people of Raqqa must be allowed to rule themselves. He indicated that this could be "through elections supervised by international bodies."
“The PYD militia will have to leave the city of Raqqa after it has been liberated from ISIS as crucial step to restoring stability in the city and preventing the emergence of any new extremist organization,” Hakim added. He also said that the people of Raqqa reject the PYD militia, adding that “the United States made a mistake relying on these militias to fight ISIS.”
Nasr Hariri, head of the delegation of the opposition’s High Negotiations Committee (HNC) to Geneva talks said that Bashar Al-Assad and his regime have committed war crimes claiming the lives of hundreds of thousands of civilians. He said that "if there is someone who has the courage to find a solution in Syria, he has to openly say we could not do anything” rather than inventing excuses. Hariri was commenting on remarks by the French President Emmanuel Macaron who on Wednesday said that nobody had shown him “a legitimate successor" to Assad.
The negotiations in Geneva have become about a party that believes in a political solution and that is working genuinely to find this solution and a party that does not want this solution and seeks to sabotage it with the support of its allies, Hariri said. He added that negotiations in Geneva are taking place in the presence of a [UN] mediator who proved unable to shoulder their responsibilities. He noted that the regime has so far refused any real engagement in the political process in Geneva and has committed war crimes that are unprecedented in modern times.
Hariri stressed that the Syrian people will continue their struggle against the dictatorship of Assad, adding that this struggle will not stop until the Syrian people regain freedom and dignity for which hundreds of thousands have sacrificed their lives. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
The Syrian Coalition organized a panel discussion under the title “Administration of Raqqa after Liberation from ISIS” in Istanbul on Wednesday.
The panel discussion was attended by President of the Syrian Coalition Riyad Seif, Secretary-General Nazir Hakim, Head of the Syrian Interim Government (SIG) Jawad Abu Hatab, Head of the provincial council in Raqqa Saad Shawish as well as members of the Coalition’s political committee and the General Assembly and representatives of friendly countries.
Seif said that the Syrian Coalition is the only side with legitimacy and authorization to administer Raqqa in accordance with an Arab and international mandate, adding that "any other solution imposed by coercion will be a time bomb and a beginning of civil war."
Seif said that enabling the people of Raqqa to administer their city under the supervision of SIG is the "best solution." He stressed the need to “rectify the consequences of assigning the task of liberating Raqqa to the militia of the Democratic Union Party (PYD) and the exclusion of the FSA groups from the operations to recapture the city from ISIS. The moderate opposition groups would have effectively carried out the task had they received support from the friends of the Syrian people.”
For his part, Head of SIG Jawad Abu Hatab said that the administration of Raqqa and the restoration of essential services will benefit everyone as it will help the fight against extremism, eliminate the sources of terrorism, restore stability to the region, and enable the displaced to return to their homes.
Member of the Syrian Coalition Mustafa Nawaf Ali said that the situation in the province of Raqqa "reached a critical stage after its people had endured unbearable suffering resulting from ISIS’s proclamation of Raqqa as the capital of their savage state.”
Ali pointed out that the elimination of terrorism cannot be achieved through cosmetic measures, but by “eliminating the conditions that lead to the respawn of terrorism.” He stressed the need to “enable the people of the region to administer their areas and preserve the social structure and the demographic landscape.” (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
Officials in the Syrian Coalition condemned the Iranian bombings on Deir Ezzor province, stressing that this act is intended to serve Tehran’s plans to extend its influence to the Mediterranean.
Iran bombing of Deir Ezzor province has spelled out “new developments” in Syria, said Oqab Yahya, member of the Coalition’s political committee. He added that this act “raises questions about Iran's role in the war on terror." Yahya also said that Iran bears primary responsibility for the daily terrorist practices against the Syrian people.
Yahya pointed out “the responsibility to fight ISIS in Syria is supposed to rest with the international anti-ISIS coalition,” Yahya said, adding that there are questions to be answered by the international coalition forces about Iran’s bombing of Deir Ezzor.
Likewise, member of the Coalition’s political committee Muhammad Dandal said that Iran’s firing of ballistic missiles on Deir Ezzor province serves its goals to link Tehran to Damascus through Baghdad. He pointed out that Tehran’s mullah regime is seeking to silently take control of Deir Ezzor through the militias it funds in Iraq and Syria.
Dandal stressed the need for action by Arab countries, especially by the Gulf countries, to stand against Iran’s expansionist, sectarian project, warning of the dangers of Iranian plans to take control of new areas where it previously had no role, such as Mosul, Anbar and Deir Ezzor. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
President of the Syrian Coalition Riad Seif sent letters to the United Nations, the UN Security Council, the Arab League, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, the Gulf Cooperation Council as well as 26 sisterly and friendly countries stressing the need to stop the brutal onslaught being waged by the Assad regime and its allies on Dara’a and surrounding towns and villages.
Seif stressed that the escalating onslaught on Dara’a constitutes a blatant violation of the ceasefire agreement and all international resolutions. He said the onslaught on Dara’a “also constitutes a major threat to the prospects of reaching a political solution in Syria.”
“Should the Assad regime and its allies be allowed to pursue a military solution in Daraa the way they did in Aleppo under shameful international inaction, Assad would lose every incentive to engage in a political process towards genuine political transition,” Seif said. He warned that the “Syrian people will completely lose faith in the political process which has been thus far the strategic choice of the Syrian opposition.”
Seif called on the international community to address the deteriorating situation in Dara’a, especially the exodus of civilians towards the Jordanian border and the terrible living situation in the area. Furthermore, Seif called for taking “every possibly measure to address the humanitarian disaster incurred by the regime’s onslaught to ease the suffering of the civilian population.”
Urgent action needs to be taken to force the Assad regime and its allies to stop the onslaught on Dara’a and engage seriously and in good faith in the political process, Seif added.
Seif pointed out that it is time the international community establish a mechanism through which such violations of international resolutions and international law can no longer go unpunished. He emphasized that Assad and his allies must be held to account for their crimes in Syria. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
Secretary-General of the Syrian Coalition Nazir Hakim stressed the need to re-activate the role of the Syrian Coalition in leading the Syrian revolution and to provide its institutions with distinguished, qualified staff. He also stressed the need to empower Syrian youth and women.
Hakim made these remarks during meetings he held separately with Lara Scarpitta, Political Advisor on Syria at the EU Delegation to Turkey, Hermann Nicolai, Senior Advisor on Syrian affairs at the German consulate in Turkey, and Fabrice Desplechin, Advisor on Syrian Affairs and France’s Deputy Consul-General in Turkey.
During the meetings, Hakim stressed that the Coalition is working to return to Syria and reach out to and strengthen the social base to which it belongs. He also highlighted the role of the Syrian Interim Government (SIG) and Assistance Coordination Unit (ACU) in contributing to these efforts in line with the presidential plan for this stage of the revolution.
Hakim pointed out that the Coalition is working to strengthen its relations with sisterly and friendly countries to serve the revolution of the Syrian people and help fulfill their demands for freedom and dignity.
Hakim pointed to the fierce onslaught the Assad regime and the Iranian militias are waging on Dara’a province supported by Russian aerial cover. He gave on overview of the situation of civilians who were displaced as a result of the indiscriminate bombing on Dara’a. Hakim called on the European officials to step support for SIG and ACU to relieve people fleeing the relentless bombardment.
For their part, the European officials reiterated continued support for the Syrian Coalition and its role in the next phase. They also reaffirmed support for SIG efforts to provide services to the civilian population in the liberated areas. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)
Head of the Syrian Interim Government (SIG) Jawad Abu Hatab said that students in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Aleppo are taking online courses as part of a partnership program established with US universities.
Abu Hatab was talking during a visit to the Faculty of Medicine and the Faculty of Dentistry in northern Syria along with the Minister of Higher Education Abdulaziz Dughaim, Minister of Education Imad Barq, Head of the University of Aleppo Abdulqadir Alsheikh, SIG Deputy Head Abdullah Hammadi, Executive Director of the Sankari Foundation Abdulrahman Damdam, and Director of Midad Association Azzam Khanji.
The delegation also visited the Teachers’ Training Institute in the town of Khirbat Aljawz in rural Lattakia, Bernas Hospital, and the Medical Institute in the Syrian coast.
Abu Hatab pointed out that they discussed ways to develop and support the two faculties through providing them with laboratories and administrative staff.
Abu Hatb pointed out that SIG has established partnerships with American universities to teach students of the Faculty of Medicine. The move aims to enrich the curricula being taught in the faculty and to help obtain international recognition of the certificates issued by the University of Aleppo.
Nearly 400 students who had to drop out of their universities because of harassment by the Assad regime security forces currently attend the Faculty of Medicine which was Established in 2015. In addition to those students, the faculty includes fresh students who graduated from the high schools run by SIG and obtained certificates issued by SIG’s Ministry of Education. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)