At the invitation of the Syrian Coalition, representatives of local councils and towns under the control of ISIS met today in the Turkish city of Gaziantep to discuss the situation in those areas.
Member of the Syrian Coalition’s political committee Nora al-Ameer said that ISIS uses civilians under its control as human shields. She said ISIS is attempting to force the US-led anti-ISIS coalition to stop targeting areas under its control to avoid causing civilian casualties.
Participants in the meeting called upon the US-led coalition forces to distinguish between ISIS and civilians living under its control. They also called for the delivery of relief and medical aid and for supporting education and health programs in ISIS-held areas.
Participants pointed out that fighting against terrorism is not limited to military means, but must include launching social programs to prevent young people from falling victim to extremist ideologies.
Moreover, conferees called on the coalition forces to secure safe humanitarian corridors for the displaced people and to avoid targeting vital public facilities such as hospitals, schools and potable water facilities.
The meeting also demanded that the PYD militia cease recruitment of children, especially young girls, under the pretext of fighting ISIS. Participants also called upon the United Nations to immediately deliver humanitarian and medical aid to civilians trapped in the southern districts of Damascus, urging the UN to reverse its decision to cut aid to those areas due to the presence of ISIS militants.
Furthermore, conferees also on the UNESCO to monitor and protect what remained of the historic city of Palmyra after it was severely damaged by ISIS and the warplanes of Russia and the Assad regime.
They stressed the need for allowing the displaced persons to go back to their homes in northeastern Syria, adding that the fight against ISIS must not be used as a pretext for forcing people out of their homes. (Source: Syrian Coalition)