SNHR is organizing an online event titled “Advancing the cause of detainees and forcibly missing is our collective responsibility” in cooperation with Charter Truth and Justice organizations
Paris – Declaration of the Syrian Network for Human Rights:
On Friday, October 22, 2021, the Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) organized an online event titled “Advancing the cause of detainees and forcibly missing persons is our collective responsibility” in cooperation and coordination with the founders of the Truth and Justice Charter. , with the participation of Mrs. Fadwa Mahmoud, co-founder of the Families for Freedom movement, Mrs. Maryam al Hallaq, President of the Caesar Families Association, Mr. Ahmad Helmi, one of the founders of the Ta’afi Initiative, Mr. Diab Serriya, from the Association of Detainees and Disappeared from Sednaya Prison, Mr. Khalil al Haj Saleh, from the Massar organization (Coalition of Families of Persons Abducted by ISIS), and Mr. Fadel Abdul Ghany , director of the Syrian Network for Human Rights.
The session, moderated by Ms. Amina Khoulani, human rights activist and representative of the Families for Freedom movement, was broadcast on Zoom and social media platforms.
Ms. Amina Khoulani opened the meeting by evoking the centrality of the question of arrests in Syria, especially since arrests and torture still continue on a daily basis. Regarding this phenomenon, she referred to the launch of the “Truth and Justice Charter” by a group of victims ‘associations, stating: “The charter constitutes a common framework for victims’ organizations and their families, and is considered as a roadmap that advances our vision and our demands on the issue of detainees. It is also intended to be a reference and a strategic vision available to all stakeholders, human rights organizations, political decision-makers and decision-makers involved in this issue.
Ms. Khoulani then gave the floor to Mr. Diab Serriya, who raised the issue of financial blackmail, to which the families of detainees are subjected in order to obtain information on their relatives. Mr. Serriya said: “We were shocked at the huge amount of money these organized networks earn, including security guards, army officers, shabiha, militias and their collaborators. There are lawyers and judges who are also involved in blackmailing the families of the victims, who were only looking for information that is a legitimate right for them.
In her remarks at the event, Ms. Fadwa Mahmoud said that arrest had been a common practice of the repressive Syrian regime for decades, and spoke of her experience, stating: “I was arrested during Hafez’s reign. al Assad and kept away from my children for two years; my son Maher was then seven years old and is now in detention. I always say that I am worried that my grandchildren will be arrested in the future as well, and that is why we are working to end this system and this tyranny. “
Ms. Mahmoud added that families have the right to know the truth and to obtain information about their missing children. She concluded: “Sometimes I feel tired and frustrated, and I cry, as I do with the rest of the Syrians, but I have to keep working, because our children desperately need us, and they desperately need us. in a voice to say: “They are the ones who deserve life, not authoritarian regimes. “
The next speaker, Mr. Ahmad Helmi, described the state of frustration as a form of luxury, which currently has no place among Syrians, saying: “We cannot give up hope and surrender to the disappearance of our sons held in secret prisons. It cannot be said that the detainees and missing in prisons and detention centers, who were killed under torture, are gone! We can’t say it’s over! We can’t say we can’t move forward!
He added: “We need to call with the loudest voice and exert daily and continuous pressure on every party involved in the decision-making. “Finally, he underlined:” The question of the detainees and the revelation of their fate is the first priority, and it is possible to work on it whatever the political file and the progress of the negotiations, and for that we presented a solution to the international community; we want to establish an independent international mechanism that strives to reveal the plight of the forcibly disappeared in Syria, to start its work today and to gain access to all detention centers.
See the full statement