LCC Report Human Rights Violations Committed by the Syrian Regime 15 March – 15 October

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Preface

A few weeks after the collapse of the Egyptian regime, under pressure of popular revolt, it became obvious that history is being written in the region. These changes came in ways that did not align with the intentions of the regional aging authoritarian regimes that maintained their power and corrupted their countriesat the expense of their own people and their basic rights to a dignified life.

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Despite the long years of oppression, it was obvious that many other countries were not far from this tide of change, and demonstrations spread to include other countries such as Libya, Yemen, Bahrain, and Syria. Those demonstrations took on various forms, as did the response of the respective oppressive regimes.

 

An oppressive regime such as that of Syria has always treated the country as personal property. This was obvious in the year 2000, when power was inherited by the son from the father, yet the same violent, oppressive methods continued to rob the Syrian people, prevent them from living in dignity, and prohibit them from participating in shaping the fate of their country.

 

The essence of such a regime was to work ensure, by all means possible, that all potential solutions to the developing crisis in Syria were eliminated. In this manner, the regime made itself the only viable solution and possible replacement for itself.

 

It was only natural for such a regime to lack the ability to adapt to change, and it was incapable of finding practical ways out of the crisis that tired the Syrian people and dried up their resources.

 

The demonstrations, which started concurrently in several Syrian cities in mid-March, have posed a serious challenge to the regime, and have shown a firm disobedience in the face of a power that was always portrayed as absolute. Thus came the decision from the regime to face the peaceful demonstrations with unprecedented brutality.

 

The regime started by using their famous sill-reputed Security Forces, which have a long history of criminal behavior. They clashed with the unarmed Syrian people, carrying out wide range of random civilian arrests regardless of the age and gender of the detainees. Even children were not spared from the brutal torture in detention basements; many children were returned to their families as unidentified, faceless bodies.

 

The regime has resorted to using live bullets from day one, and has also used military helicopters to open fire on demonstrators in the city of Daraa, the birth place of all Syrian Revolution demonstrations. All this has occurred in the midst of media blackouts, where international and independent media, as well as human rights organizations, have been denied entry into Syria to document and witness the daily-committed violations, because a killer does not bring witnesses to his crime scene.

 

When demonstrations spread across the nation, when every new funeral turned to an angry demonstration, and when every demonstrator became a potential martyr, the regime participated in raising the demands of the people to reach the downfall of the entire regime with all its people and symbols. The regime has driven the country and themselves to the point of no return, and their remaining in power is now considered a grave danger to the lives of the Syrians as well as to the future of the nation and the region as a whole.

 

The oppressive regime in Syria used all its military and security forces against their unarmed people, waging open war on the crowds of peaceful demonstrators. In some documented cases, the regime used military equipment such as helicopters, armored sea vessels, and military tanks, to bomb residential neighborhoods in many cities. This is in addition to using internationally banned weapons, such as poison gas and expanding bullets, to disperse peaceful demonstrators.

 

Many public venues, such as cinemas, stadiums, and theaters, were turned into detention centers in which systematic brutal torture occurred, resulting in many death-under-torture cases. In addition, there have been several forced disappearance of citizens who were kidnapped for months, and disappeared completely thereafter.

 

There are many documented cases of hospitals that were invaded to prevent treating the wounded; in some cases, the wounded were detained or even killed.

 

All of the above happened during seven months of an almost complete international silence, save a few shy statements by the international community that did not reach the point of condemning those documented cases as crimes against humanity.

 

It is unacceptable for the Arab nations, the Arab League, and the United Nations and their organizations to remain on an undecided weak stance. They have not been able, so far, to adopt one serious and strong move to stop the instruments of this regime from committing more crimes and violations against the peaceful people who are merely demanding their basic rights.

 

This hesitance and the lack of a conclusive stance is sending very negative signs to the Syrian people, who are starting to consider this indirect participation in the ongoing assault against. This also gives the regime the leeway to continue its nihilistic approach, and provides incentives to similar regimes in the world to commit atrocities against their own people and remain unaccountable.

 

We now bring this file before you and expect a serious and firm stance that acknowledges that the Syrian people are fellow humans and should treated as such; and decisive action that corresponds with the substance and basis of international law, as well as the concepts of international human rights.

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