Member of the Syrian Coalition’s political committee, Yasser Farhan, said that putting an end to mass forced displacement operations in Syria must be a priority of the United Nations. He stressed that the UN, which is leading the political process and negotiations in Syria, should prioritize the return of all those who were forcefully displaced from to their homes across Syria.
Farhan was speaking during a side event at the 37th regular session of the UN Human Rights Council in the Swiss city of Geneva on Monday to discuss the mass forced displacement and demographic change operations in Syria.
Participants in the side event included members of the Syrian Coalition, representatives of the Syrian Civil Defense, also known as the White Helmets, Syrian civil society organizations, as well as eyewitnesses who were forced out of their homes in Syria.
Farhan pointed out that there were major parties involved in mass forced displacement and demographic change operations in Syria, chiefly among them is the Assad regime and militias of the Democratic Union Party (PYD).
Farhan said that around 400,000 civilians who currently live in the besieged eastern Ghouta near Damascus are threatened with mass forced displacement should international resolutions, especially resolution 2401, are left unimplemented. UN Security Council resolution 2401, which calls for nationwide ceasefire, should pave the way for the implementation of resolution 2254, which calls for a comprehensive cease-fire, the lifting of the sieges, the delivery of humanitarian aid, and the release of detainees, he added.
Ahmed al-Yousef, a volunteer with the Syrian Civil Defense, said that regime forces besiege civilians with the aim of forcing them to move to other areas. He noted that the Assad regime carried out 16 forced displacement operations in 11 different areas across Syria.
Yousef stressed that the opening of humanitarian corridors should be aimed at the introduction of relief aid and the evacuation of civilians as was the case in some areas across Syria. He underscored that mass forced displacement constitutes war crimes whose perpetrators must be held accountable. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)