Second Syrian Women Forum
May 22, 2021
Under the slogan of “Al-Assad and his elections are illegitimate,” the second Syrian Women’s Forum was held in Afrin on May 22, with the participation of a large number of women who are active in public affairs in various fields.
The second Forum, which came as a continuation of the first forum, aims to enhance communication among Syrian women; acknowledge their great struggle; and emphasize that Syrian women are still continuing their revolution in the face of the regime and tyranny despite the various violations.
Participants reaffirmed their rejection of the elections farce that the Assad regime intends to hold even though it has lost all legal and political legitimacy and possesses the worst record in human rights violations, let alone it has not carried out any democratic process since its seizure of power in a military coup. They called on the international community to take serious measures in order not to recognize these farcical elections. They also called for serious action to achieve a political transition which begins with the departure of Bashar al-Assad and his regime through the formation of a transitional governing body that works to establish a safe and neutral environment in accordance with a new, modern and democratic constitution. Only under this new constitution free and fair elections can be held with the participation of all Syrians inside and outside the country and under the supervision of the United Nations and international organizations. They thanked the states that prevented the Assad regime from conducting its elections farce on their territory as they called on all states to follow suit.
Participants also strongly condemned the Assad regime’s crime of forcibly displacing Syrian civilians from their homes with the help of its Russian and Iranian allies. The latest of these was the forced displacement of dozens of households from the town of Um Batina in Quneitra province. They stressed the need for urgent action to stop these acts, which violate international law and seeks to change the identity Syrian society.
The Form stressed the need to consolidate the role of Syrian women in the political process that is based on the Geneva Communique of 2012 and UN Security Council Resolutions 2118 and 2254 to build a civil, democratic, pluralistic state that adopts the principle of equal citizenship; reflects the diversity and richness of Syrian society; and respects human rights. They stressed that the new constitution must annul all discriminatory laws that the Assad regime enacted against women.
Moreover, the Forum stressed the need to step up the efforts to empower women and provide them with the opportunity to participate in all institutions, political parties and decision-making centers so as to highlight their competencies and leadership, political, economic and social capabilities. It also stressed that Syrian women must be given the opportunity to prove what they can provide in the service of the Syrian people and their just cause as well as to demonstrate how the Assad regime is using the presence of women as adornment in front of the international and Arab community, while it continues to commit crimes against the Syrian people and women in particular, including killing, displacement and arrest.
The participants called on the United Nations and all international humanitarian organizations to work on extending the UN mandate for the cross-border delivery of humanitarian aid, starting with UN resolutions 2139 and 2165. They also stressed the need to open all accessible crossings and warned against the disastrous consequences of Russia’s use of veto against the extension of the mandate for the delivery of humanitarian aid. They also called for the immediate release of all detainees and helping the survivors from the Assad regime’s human slaughterhouses.
Participants also discussed taking the executive steps to launch the Syrian Women Commission.