Syrian Opposition Coalition
Department of Media and Communications
October 21, 2021
After Amnesty International released a damning report under the title “You’re going to your death” in early September, Human Rights Watch (HRW) on Wednesday released a report under a similar title: “Our Lives Are Like Death.” HRW’s report came to confirm most of the findings in Amnesty’s report, while recounting more horrific stories about the fate of refugees who voluntarily or were forcibly returned to the regime-controlled areas in Syria.
The findings of these reports confirm that any attempt to force Syrian refugees to return to regime-held areas amounts to a crime and a partnership in the violations that the returnees will be subjected to. The required action must be aimed at the implementation of UN resolutions and ending the root cause of displacement, chaos and devastation.
The mere passage of time does not mean that the reality on the ground has changed. The criminal and terrorist tendency that has for years taken roots in the behavior of the Assad regime, its apparatus, elements, leaders, gangs and allied militias is still its only means of survival, control and extortion of the Syrian people.
HRW’s report emphasized that the regime-controlled areas are not safe and that host countries must stop any deportations or forcible return.
Millions of internally displaced people and refugees are facing enormous challenges. However, their greatest concern stems from the prospect of forcible return. The international community is required to do everything that would change the reality on the ground in Syria and put an end to the Assad regime’s criminality and the direct, constant threat it poses to Syrians everywhere.