Foreword

We Are Not Alone!


The sister of deceased British MP Jo Cox has called on leading UK politicians to continue the murdered politician's legacy and act on Syria, where 1 million children are trapped in Idlib province amid a hail of bombing. Earlier last week, the United Nations Security Council passed its first resolution on missing persons in armed conflicts, seizing a key opportunity to strengthen efforts toward uncovering the fates of those missing and giving closure to countless families. Human rights in Syria has been a pressing issue in Syria throughout the past 8 years. While governments are yet to take a clearer position regarding the fate of the Syrian criminal regime led by Bashar al-Assad, international and civil society organizations across the world, as well as politicians, academics, and activists, are in full support of the Syrian case. We, the Syrians, need to be more efficient in stretching the bridges between ourselves and the world that cares about us. While the governments fail to do their duties, we can build up on the friendship of the peoples and their legitimate organizations. Hic Rhodus, hic salta!

June 18, 2019


We Are Not Alone!

Wael Sawah – Pro-justice

The sister of deceased British MP Jo Cox has called on leading UK politicians to continue the murdered politician’s legacy and act on Syria, where 1 million children are trapped in Idlib province amid a hail of bombing.

Earlier last week, the United Nations Security Council passed its first resolution on missing persons in armed conflicts, seizing a key opportunity to strengthen efforts toward uncovering the fates of those missing and giving closure to countless families.

Human rights in Syria has been a pressing issue in Syria throughout the past 8 years. While governments are yet to take a clearer position regarding the fate of the Syrian criminal regime led by Bashar al-Assad, international and civil society organizations across the world, as well as politicians, academics, and activists, are in full support of the Syrian case.

Jo Cox was a British Labor MP who tirelessly campaigned for the UK to stop the war in Syria before she was murdered by a far-right gunman on 16 June 2016. A letter from Cox’s sister, Kim Leadbeater, called on British politicians to take a break from the debate around Brexit and focus their attention on helping Syrians.

In her letter, Leadbeater remind “all party leaders and Conservative leadership candidates” of the ongoing horror, that is harvesting dozens of innocent civilians in Idlib every day.

“Jo was a passionate campaigner on humanitarian issues. The best way to honor her memory is to do what she would have done this weekend, and remember those in the greatest need of our support. One of the issues that mattered most to Jo was the humanitarian emergency in Syria. Tragically, three years after her death, the suffering of civilians continues,” the letter reads.

“Three years ago, when Aleppo was under an unrelenting campaign of airstrikes, Jo wrote that ‘it is not ethical to wish away the barrel bombs from the Syrian government when you have the capacity to stop them.’ Millions in Idlib are again facing the horror of daily barrel bombs,” the letter continues.

“Today we ask you the simple question Jo would be asking: If you become Prime Minister, what will you do to save the million children trapped under bombs in Idlib?”

“Jo knew the importance of the UK’s role in protecting civilians in Syria, and urged that ‘it is time to get Syria off the too difficult to deal with pile and to get back to basics, to see the crisis in Syria as primarily about Syria and Syrians,” the writer adds.

“Since she wrote those words, tens of thousands more have been killed, hundreds of thousands have lost their homes and millions remain living under the terror of daily barrel bombs. In memory of all she worked for, we are asking you to follow her lead and give Syrians the attention and support they so urgently need.”

The UNSC resolution adopted calls on parties to conflicts to better prevent disappearances in the first place, and to not wait until a conflict is over before searching for or marking graves.

The president of the International Committee of the Red Cross, Peter Maurer, told Council members today that the pain of uncertainty “infects whole communities, lasting decades, preventing societies from reconciling.”

Syria is a case in point, where tens of thousands have gone missing, either by the Syrian government, the Islamic State (ISIS), or anti-government armed groups. The misery experienced by relatives of the missing is compounded by difficulties around uncovering their fate. Families on all sides of Syria’s conflict have told Human Rights Watch of their struggles to secure information about their loved ones. Some relatives have spent their life savings and countless hours following any lead. Unfortunately, most efforts rarely yield success. The countries involved have done very little to strengthen and enforce centralized approaches to uncovering the fates of the missing.

We, the Syrians, need to be more efficient in stretching the bridges between ourselves and the world that cares about us. While the governments fail to do their duties, we can build up on the friendship of the peoples and their legitimate organizations.

Hic Rhodus, hic salta!