The Syrian Opposition Coalition’s National Commission on Detainees and Missing Persons and the Females Survivors Union issued a joint statement on the occasion of the International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances. They stressed that enforced disappearance is one of the most serious crimes against humanity.
“The Assad regime uses enforced disappearance as a basic strategy to rule Syria, and adopts it as a tool to take revenge on the people who demand the fight against corruption and tyranny, and dedicates it as a means of putting pressure on opponents, witnesses, journalists, activists, lawyers, judges, doctors, those interested in the truth and all human rights defenders,” the statement said.
The statement stressed that “giving victims of enforced disappearance, their families, and victims of torture in Syria priority in the budget of the United Nations Voluntary Fund for Victims of Torture, due to the large number of victims and their horrible suffering, and working within specialized programs to honor them and support them in terms of recovery and reparation.”
It also called for dismantling and changing the system of enforced disappearance, torture and liquidation in Syria by implementing Security Council and General Assembly resolutions and achieving political transition.
Moreover, the statement called for exerting effective pressure on the Assad regime to open all secret and public prisons to international investigation committees and relevant humanitarian and human rights monitoring missions in order to release detainees, reveal the fate of the missing, and hand over the bodies of the victims.
It also called for establishing an international-Syrian coalition to reveal the fate of the missing, release the detainees, hold those involved accountable, and consider punishment as a main means to pursue justice for the victims, and end the phenomena of disappearance, torture and liquidation.
Many independent international and Syrian organizations stressed that the Syrian people are the number one victim of this crime. They pointed out that despite the immense efforts to record the number of the victims, the real number of the disappeared in Syria remains unknown. (Source: SOC’s Media Department)