We Welcome the Report’s Findings, Which Consider the Recent Presidential and Parliamentary Elections in Syria Illegitimate and Indicate That Conditions Are Not Suitable for the Return of Refugees
Paris – Statement by the Syrian Network for Human Rights:
On Monday, June 14, 2021, the Netherlands’ Ministry of Foreign Affairs released its general report on the situation in Syria in relation to the evaluation of asylum requests from people coming from Syria in order to reach a decision on the repatriation of rejected Syrian asylum seekers. The points addressed in the report cover several topics, primarily related to the human rights situation in Syria, political developments in the country and the security situation there.
The report relies on several sources, most notably, in order of the number of quotes included:
Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR): 96 quotes.
European Asylum Support Office (EASO): 80 quotes.
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR): 74 quotes.
Independent International Commission of Inquiry (COI): 62 quotes.
The report also cites other sources such as the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, Human Rights Watch, and Amnesty International, in addition to the US Department of State’s reports on human rights in Syria, as well as other local and international organizations. We have reviewed the 112-page report, which was published in the Dutch language, and here will briefly summarize the most prominent of its contents.
The report addresses the political, military, security, humanitarian, and economic situation in Syria, and refers to the absence of any significant progress at the level of the political transition process, stressing that the parliamentary elections held on July 19, 2020, and the presidential elections that were held in May 2021, were illegitimate.
In terms of the economic situation, the report notes that the economic collapse resulting from the ongoing ten-year conflict has worsened as a result of the repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic, indicating a sharp rise in the prices of basic materials, and a steep decrease in job opportunities. According to the report, by the end of 2020, the proportion of the population suffering from extreme poverty reached 80% of the total population of Syria, and 12.4 million Syrian citizens cannot constantly obtain sufficient food. The report also notes that this number has increased by about 4.5 million compared to 2019.