The Syrian regime is exploiting passports renewal as a weapon of war


Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the borders of each State.

Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country.

In addition to the military and physical oppression, the Syrian regime has extended its systematic oppressive campaign to include the administrational and institutional levels as it plays a role to dedicate security, economic, and social crises as a part of its oppression and control system.

The Syrian regime has been harassing opposition activists and Syrian citizen since before the Syrian revolution as it issued dozens of banned-from-traveling lists, and deprived tens of thousands of exiled of their rightful passports after they left Syria upon Hama massacre in the 80s in the first years of Hafez Al-Assad presidential term.

With expanding the oppression campaign, sieging more areas that are being shelled using heavy weapons, and establishing more military checkpoints inside the cities in a rapid manner, the need to recruit more military personnel and the number of people that are being pursued by the Syrian regime have both significantly increased which forced the opposition activists and even some of the civilians to keep a low profile or travel abroad. Therefore, obtaining a passport has become an absolute necessity for some people on one hand and an opportunity to exploit this need for the Syrian regime on the other hand.