The US, France, UK, Germany, Qatar Reiterate that Conditions for Refugees’ Safe and Dignified Return to Syria are Nonexistent
Thursday, September 21, 2023: The Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) held an event on this date on the sidelines of the 78th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in collaboration with the US Department of State’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor (DRL). Sponsored by the United States, France, the United Kingdom, Germany, and Qatar, the event, entitled, ‘Twelve Years of Suffering: Examining Human Rights Abuses and Opportunities for Accountability in Syria’, featured Erin Barclay, Acting Assistant Secretary for the DRL, Beth Van Schaack, Ambassador-at-Large for the US Department of State’s Office of Global Criminal Justice, Ethan Goldrich, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern Affairs at the US Department of State, Stephen Hickey, Director of Middle East and North Africa at the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), Luise Amtsberg, Germany’s Federal Government Commissioner for Human Rights Policy and Humanitarian Assistance, Delphine Borione, France’s Ambassador at-Large for Human Rights, H.E. Almuhannad Ali Hassan Alhammadi, Director of the U.S. and Americas Department at Qatar’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Linnea Arvidsson of the UN Commission of Inquiry on Syria (COI), Fadel Abdul Ghany, SNHR Executive Director, Dr. Talal Sunbulli of the Syrian Association for Citizens’ Dignity (SACD), and Ahed Fistouk, a Syrian activist who works with the Multifaith Alliance. The panel discussion, which was moderated by Qutaiba Idlbi of the Atlantic Council, was broadcast via zoom and SNHR’s media channels.
During the event, the speakers discussed the ongoing human rights violations and abuses faced by Syrians and explored how the international community can advance justice and accountability efforts for perpetrators, as well as discussing issues related to displacement, refugees, and enforced disappearance.