First Syrian Youth Forum
May 26, 2021
Under the slogan ‘Assad and his elections are illegitimate,’ the first Syrian Youth Forum was held in the town of Azaz in May 26 with the participation of a broad spectrum of free Syrian youth who are active in civil and political life.
The Forum came to promote the involvement of Syrian youth in political affairs; confirm that they were and still are the backbone of the Syrian revolution; and that they will continue the struggle against injustice and tyranny.
Participants expressed their outright rejection of the elections farce that the Assad regime is conducting, stressing that they have no legal, political, or legitimate value. They are a total farce being carried out by a murderous regime that lacks all forms of legitimacy as it seized power through a military coup. They called on the international community to assume its responsibilities towards the Assad regime’s persistence in disrupting a political solution and violation of international laws in full view of the world.
Participants reaffirmed that the only acceptable elections in Syria are the ones in which the war criminal Bashar al-Assad has no place. They also must begin with the departure of al-Assad and his regime by forming a transitional governing body that works to create a safe and neutral environment that guarantees the voluntary and safe return of Syrian refugees in accordance with a new, modern and democratic constitution on the basis of which free and fair elections will be held and in which all Syrians inside and outside the country can participate under the supervision of the UN and international organizations concerned with the integrity of the elections and in accordance with UN Resolution 2254 and the relevant UN resolutions.
Moreover, participants stressed that the engagement of the youth in the political process faces many challenges, stressing the need for political and revolutionary bodies to pay more attention to the youth and support them in order to remove the effects of the black era of Assad’s rule, which prevented any effective role of the youth.
Participants also called for strengthening the connection between the Syrian Opposition Coalition and the revolutionary youth groups, in addition to framing the youth within groups and bodies in order to allow them to truly and effectively participate in political action.
They also stressed the need to release the detainees in the Assad regime’s prisons and disclose the fate of the missing. They reaffirmed the principles of accountability against the perpetrators of war crimes against Syrians, and the importance of preserving Syrian state institutions and ridding them of corruption and restructuring the security and military institutions. They condemned all forms of demographic change and state terrorism practiced by the Assad regime and its allies as they called for the withdrawal of all terrorist sectarian militias and the Russian occupation from Syria, while preserving Syria’s independence and territorial integrity.