The Syrian Coalition’s Representative to the Benelux and European Union, Mouaffaq Nyrabia, said that vital to reaching a political solution in Syria are a guarantee on civilian protection and accountability to bring perpetrators of war crimes to justice starting with Bashar Al-Assad – the man responsible for this bloody conflict and the death of over 300,000 people.
“It is shameful that the UN Security Council continues to fail to hold one of its own members to account for the deaths of so many innocent Syrian civilians. Furthermore, neither UN Security Council Resolution 2254 nor the Vienna agreement addressed this fundamental threat to civilian life in Syria which continues to fuel the refugee crisis and drive radicalization,” Nyrabia added.
Nyrabia also said that “a guarantee on civilian protection is critical to ending the crisis. Any political solution which allows Assad and Russian jets to continue indiscriminately bombing civilian areas is simply not viable. Recent atrocities such as aerial attacks by Russian air forces on a civilian marketplace in Idlib last month, killing more than 50 civilians, and the Assad regime’s use of barrel bombs containing toxic gas in Mouadamiya, will only imperil the political process and make peace impossible.”
Nyrabia stressed that “the threat to Syrians and global security will not end as long as Assad remains in power … The international community’s consensus on the need to defeat to ISIS is welcome by Syrians; the primary victims of the terrorist group’s barbarity. But ISIS will not be defeated as long as Assad remains in place, and his crimes unaccounted for.”
“As a first step to genuine accountability, the Vienna process must guarantee justice for all Syrian victims of these heinous crimes. This includes the referral of the Syrian case to the International Criminal Court,” Nyrabia added.
Nyrabia emphasized that “accountability cannot be separated from diplomatic efforts; the inclusion of war criminals in any transitional government will only undermine the credibility of such a government and will not serve the legitimate needs of Syrians.” (Source: Syrian Coalition)