The Syrian Coalition’s Department of Foreign Affairs met with a Canadian delegation headed by Stefanie Beck, Assistant of the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs.
Both sides discussed the latest developments on the ground, especially with regard to the crimes of the mass forced displacement, the continued bombardment of populated areas, and the recently introduced Law No. 10 in addition to the latest political developments.
The two sides stressed that Iran is a source of concern as it is causing instability in the region and working to serve its interests and controlling the region through military and economical means.
Head of the Department of Foreign Affairs, Abdul Ahad Steifo, said that the continued war crimes by the Assad regime and its backers gives the impression to the Syrian people that the existence of international institutions is useless and that its resolutions are anything but effective.
Steifo stressed the need for international combined push to activate the work of the international mechanism for accountability for war crimes in Syria, especially the ones targeting civilians, such as the use of chemical weapons, incendiary bombs and barrel bombs.
Steifo called for a boycott of the conference on denuclearization the UN intends to hold next month. He also called on the Canadian delegation to encourage the rest of the friendly countries to also boycott the conference. He said that it was “shameful for the United Nations” to allow the countries most involved in the use of chemical weapons to chair the conference.
Moreover, Steifo pointed out that the political process is almost dead because of the insistence of the Assad regime to pursue a military solution to the conflict. He added that Iran does not believe in a political solution in Syria as it continues to support Assad crimes.
“The Assad and Iranian regimes want the Syrian people to give up their demands for freedom, dignity and democracy and for building genuine institutions that are based on justice and equality. Meeting these demands is possible only through reaching a comprehensive political transition and through the implementation of the Geneva Communique of 2012 and the UN Security Council resolution 2254. The Assad regime will not sit at the negotiating table if it is not forced to do so,” Steifo said.
For her part, member of the Department Dima Moussa said that reaching a political solution must precede any talks about reconstruction. She underscored that any attempt to normalize relations with the Assad regime, lift the sanctions on it, or restore consular relations with the regime will be understood by the Assad regime as a sign of weakness on the part of the Western countries and will negatively impact the final political solution.
Moussa stressed the need to use all judicial and legal means to begin the process of holding accountable all those involved in war crimes and crimes against humanity.
Moussa urged the use of reports issued by the UN committees and relevant organizations, many of which proved the involvement of the Assad regime in war crimes such as the use of globally banned weapons, most notably chemical weapons.
Other war crimes also included the as the torture of detainees and the systematic mass forced displacement as well as the introduction of new legalizations, the most recent of which is Law Number 10 (2018), Moussa said. The implementation of such laws risks depriving the displaced persons and refugees of the right to return to their homes. Such laws also violate article 17 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Members of the Department thanked Canada for its support for the rights and aspirations of the Syrian people as well as for its generous provision of relief and humanitarian support for the Syrian people. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)