The Syrian Observatory For Human Rights

8th anniversary of the “sectarian genocide massacre” | 325 killed including 58 children and 65 females in al-Bayda and Baniyas, while SOHR renews calls for bringing murderers to justice

Today, the Syrians mark the 8th anniversary of one of the most heinous massacres in modern history that took place on May 2 and May 3 in 2013 by allies of the Syrian regime against civilians in the coastal city of Baniyas in Tartus province. On Thursday, May 2, a frenzied sectarian assault was carried out by Alawite troops against the local Sunni population in the village of al-Bayda, southern Baniyas in the west of the country. The perpetrators murdered old people and women, burnt the martyrs’ bodies, arrested and displaced the residents of the neighbouring district.

Moreover, the murderers, in the night of May 2 and the morning of May 3, repeated a similar massacre in Ras al-Nabaa, a highly populated Sunni area in the southern neighbouring district of al-Bayda city, killing old people, females, and children, burning houses and displacing residents of the neighbourhood and surrounding neighbourhoods.

According to Syrian Observatory for Human Rights statistics, 325 people, including 32 boys, 26 girls and 65 women, were killed in the two massacres, while tens others went missing, most probably arrested by regime security services.

The sectarian genocide massacre in the city of Baniyas and the village of al-Bayda that left hundreds dead and wounded and resulted in the displacement of thousands of people was an undeniable and completed crime. However, no action has been taken so far.

After the massacre has occurred, Bashar al-Assad regime-backed media has displayed videos showing arrested members of the victims’ families who lost their sons in the city of Baniyas while confessing fabricated crimes. However, the massacre was committed by lieutenant Aly Wagih Shadod, a commander in the National Defense Forces in Baniyas, whose subordinated members, who had been recruited in Tartus and Latakia, were all Alevis . Shadod was later killed in clashes with the rebel and Islamic brigades by the end of November in 2013.

On the 8th anniversary of the “sectarian genocide massacre” in Baniyas, we, at the Syrian Observatory, renew our calls for the international community to take an action and bring the murderers of the Syrian people to justice, topped by the regime of Bashar al-Assad and sent them to international trials.

SOHR has documented at least 19 testimonies of survivors of the two massacres in al-Bayda and Ras al-Nabaa.