Syrian Opposition Coalition – Syria
Department of Media and Communications
October 29, 2020
The Syrian Opposition Coalition (SOC) welcomes the latest briefing by the UN Special Envoy to Syria, Mr. Geir Pedersen as it stresses all the points contained therein. It also stresses the need to work on building a comprehensive, credible international mechanism to implement UN Security Council Resolution 2254.
The SOC reasserts a number of points that the UN envoy highlighted in his briefing, especially his reference to the recent Russian escalation through airstrikes targeting a camp belonging to one of the components of the Syrian Negotiations Commission and his emphasis on the gravity of this escalation, its possible repercussions, and the need to intervene to prevent its recurrence.
The UN envoy’s briefing also addressed two important issues, namely the issues of refuges and detainees as Pedersen stressed the need for serious efforts and cooperation between the major actors to create the appropriate conditions for the safe, dignified and voluntary return of refugees. He also stressed the priority of the issue of detainees, the kidnapped and missing persons as well as the need to work effectively and seriously to resolve this issue.
The international envoy also referred to the repeated kidnappings and assassinations in the regime-held areas, highlighting the fragility of the agreements imposed on these areas with iron, fire and terrorism and their failure to restore stability. The UN envoy also reaffirmed the principles of a political solution, UN Resolution 2254 and the need to organize free, independent and fair elections under the supervision of the United Nations and in accordance with the highest international standards with the participation of all Syrians.
Pederson’s briefing was balanced and practical as it touched on the Assad regime’s continued attempts to disrupt the work of the Constitutional Committee and to procrastinate with the aim of gaining more time.
The majority of the comments made by representatives of member states on Pedersen’s briefing were positive as they exposed Russia’s attempts to disrupt international efforts in Syria. The SOC reasserts the need to establish a holistic, credible international mechanism to support the political process and enforce international resolutions on Syria, most importantly UN Resolution 2254 which calls for reaching a political solution based on the Geneva Communique of 2012 leading to the establishment of a transitional governing; meeting the goals and aspirations of the Syrian people; and paving the way for the dignified return of Syrian refugees to their homeland so that they to contribute to its rebuilding and prosperity.