Syrian Opposition Coalition
May 22, 2021
The Syrian Opposition Coalition’s (SOC) General Assembly held its 56th session simultaneously at the SOC’s office in Azaz and at its headquarters in Istanbul on May 20-21.
The session was opened by SOC’s President Nasr Al-Hariri from the town of Azaz by observing a minute of silence for the fallen heroes of the Syrian revolution and the brotherly Palestinian people.
Al-Hariri congratulated the Syrian people for the Eid al-Fitr, expressing the hoping that Syrians will celebrate the next Eid after Syria has been liberated from the murderous regime and established its democratic system that guarantees freedoms and give way to the creativity of Syrians in all fields.
Al-Hariri raised a number of major issues that constitute the work program and positions of the SOC. The first of these was exposing the elections farce which aim to rehabilitate the Assad regime in utter disregard for all human rights and various laws. He said that the true place of those who have committed crimes against the people is the International Criminal Court, denouncing the repetition of the farce whose results are known beforehand with the support of the regime’s Iranian and Russian enablers. He pointed out that these so-called elections will be held amid foggy international positions that fall short of dealing with such a criminal. He expressed his hope that these positions would correspond with the rights of the Syrian people to reach a political solution. The SOC expressed its appreciation to all states and governments that prevented the Assad regime from holding its farcical elections on their territory, most notably Turkey and Germany.
The Syrian people are expecting stronger positions that are not limited to stripping the regime of political legitimacy, but that also strip it of legal legitimacy. They also expect increased support for their aspirations to establish a democratic system of rule that guarantees public and private freedoms, the protection of human rights, and the rights of all Syrian components.
Moreover, al-Hariri stressed that the SOC continues its major campaign to reject attempts to rehabilitate the Assad regime by establishing numerous contacts and meetings with the revolutionary bodies and actors in the liberated areas as well as in the areas under the control of the Assad regime, the PYD militia, HTS and the Syrian communities in the diaspora. The SOC is also communicating with sisterly and friendly states to reach common positions, and is carrying out activities that express our people’s rejection of this shameful process.
In the second issue, al-Hariri addressed the Palestinian issue that was present in the clear positions that the SOC expressed regarding the crimes committed by the Israeli occupation against land and holy sites in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, the attack on worshipers in the Al-Aqsa Mosque, the unleashing of rabid settlers against civilians, and then the aggression on Gaza. The SOC stresses that it views Palestine as an Arab, Islamic and liberation issue that concerns all the free people of the world. Therefore, it reaffirms its support for the Palestinian people and their legitimate right to establish their independent state with Jerusalem as its capital, and the return of refugees. It also sees in the Israeli racial regime the other side of the murderous Assad regime, adding that the latest events have exposed the lies of the slogans of resistance and the Iranian mullahs’ regime and its plans, which only serve its own interests and its national-sectarian project in the first place.
With regard to the third issue, al-Hariri talked about the positive political activity that the region has witnessed in recent months, starting with the Gulf reconciliation, the detente between Turkey and Egypt and between Turkey and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. He stressed that the SOC welcomes the Qatari initiative for reconciliation as it believes that these positive developments must be reflected in the Syrian situation, namely in the form of more positions in support of the right of the Syrian people to regain freedom, and an end to the tragedy caused by the Assad regime.
Finally, al-Hariri saluted the resilience that the Syrian people are showing everywhere, especially in the regime-held areas. He also saluted all forms of popular movement in a number of Syrian regions, from Syria’s south to the regions east of the Euphrates. He condemned the brutal practices of the PYD militia, namely the shooting of demonstrators, killing a number of innocent citizens, and arresting hundreds who took to the streets against the decision to rise prices.
Al-Hariri pointed to the Assad regime’s continued crimes and its violation of the agreements signed in the areas west of the Euphrates, stressing that the regime insists on pursuing the military-security approach as it continues to forcibly displace our people to northwestern Syria by arbitrary methods, as it has done most recently with dozens of citizens from the village of Um Batna in Quneitra province. The SOC is working in cooperation with the Syrian Interim Government to find shelter for them and meet their needs.
The SOC’s vice-presidents and Secretary-General submitted reports on the work of the departments and committees that they supervise with the aim of evaluating their work.
Head of the Syrian Interim Government Abdulrahman Mustafa gave a detailed overview on SIG’s most important activities and achievements, and the difficulties it is facing due to the scarcity of financial resources. He also talked about the major projects that SIG has launched at various levels, which were discussed in detail and in a positive atmosphere.
Hadi Al-Bahra submitted a detailed report on the work, activities and important projects of the Syria Recovery Trust Fund. The Assembly discussed the major aspects of the Fund’s work.
Mohammed Hassanou, Director of the Assistance Coordination Unit, submitted a detailed report on the Unit’s work and projects. The report was enriched with questions and answers by the Unit’s head.
The Assembly continued its meetings on the second day by reviewing the reports of the SOC’s departments, offices and committees. It also reviewed a report on the field and political reality by the Office of Strategic Consulting, as well as a briefing by Coordinator of the SOC’s Office of Documents and Studies, and the role of the SOC at this stage.
For his part, Anas Abdah, President of the Syrian Negotiations Commission, gave an overview on the major developments in the political process, the results of the Commission’s meetings, and its meetings with the states active in Syria and the international envoy. Hadi Al-Bahra, Co-chair of the Constitutional Committee, also gave an overview and the state of stalemate and the Assad regime’s disruption of the work of the Committee, making it clear that the regime effectively trampled the essence of the Constitutional Committee and the drafting of a new constitution for the country.
The meeting was concluded with the Assembly sending of greetings to our steadfast people wherever they were who are still committed to toppling the murderous regime and reaching a political solution that establishes a new era that our people deserve.
May our wounded recover, our detainees be free, and our fallen heroes rest in peace.
May the revolution for freedom and dignity emerge victorious.