Syrian Opposition Coalition
Department of Media and Communications
August 30, 2022
On the International Day of Victims of Enforced Disappearances, which falls on August 30 of each year, the Syrian Opposition Coalition (SOC) points out that the Assad regime has used enforced disappearance as a weapon of warfare against the Syrian people who have been demanding freedom since 2011. Enforced disappearance is one of the most dangerous tactics that the Assad regime has been using to consolidate its grip on power since it seized power in Syria via a coup d’état in 1970.
Enforced disappearance is one of the tactics that the Assad regime has adopted alongside murder, terrorism, repression, and mass forced displacement. There are no fewer than 131,469 detainees and forcibly disappeared persons who are documented by their full names in Assad’s prisons, including 3,621 children and 8,037 women, according to the Syrian Network for Human Rights. The real number is much higher in view of the difficulty of documentation.
The SOC holds the international community partially responsible for allowing the Assad regime to go unpunished despite the Caesar photos, the video of Al-Tadamon neighborhood, and the documentation of thousands of crimes that clearly indicate that the disappeared and detainees in the human slaughterhouses of the Assad regime are being subjected to the most severe methods of psychological and physical torture.
Indeed, enforced disappearance is just one of the various crimes that the Assad regime and its allies are committing against the Syrian people. Therefore, expectation by some states that the Assad regime will change its behavior is a waste of time. The Syrian people will not accept circumventing their demands for freedom and dignity, and for achieving a political transition in accordance with UN Security Council Resolution 2254.