SYRIAN CIVIL SOCIETY: REFUGEES RETURN CONFERENCE IS AN INSULT TO THE SUFFERING OF 13M DISPLACED SYRIANS

The internationally-boycotted conference on returns to Syria organized in Damascus was an insult to the suffering of Syrian refugees and displaced persons, Syrian civil society organizations said on Friday, stressing that the conference has failed to address the humanitarian conditions and the real obstacles that prevent refugees from returning to their home.

The 122 civil society organizations stressed that the conference was largely political, did not address the legitimate demands and concerns of civilians to safe returns, did not include any attempts to building peace nor attempted to hold perpetrators of war crimes and human rights violations to account over more than a decade of the armed conflict.

It is worth noting the role that the conference organizers have played as primary parties to the conflict, which has caused the displacement of more than 13 million Syrians since 2011, and are listed for killing and maiming, forced displacement, destroying infrastructure including schools and hospitals, sexual and gender based violence and other crimes against humanity and grave violations, according to United Nations figures and data.

Only seven states attended the international conference, including: China, Iran, Russia, Pakistan, Oman, and Lebanon. Most of the neighboring countries, the European Union and the United States boycotted the conference.