المرصد السوري لحقوق الانسان
The Syrian Observatory For Human Rights

Eight years on chemical massacre in al-Ghouta | international community remains silent

Eight years have been passed on the most violent massacre in the 21st century that east al-Ghouta has experienced in Damascus and claimed lives of hundreds of Syrian citizens including women, men and children in front of the whole world, while the international community has been turned its eyes blind on that humanitarian catastrophe. Meanwhile, some players have been working on cleaning the image of the regime and seek to restore it back at the international arena.

Right organizations topped by SOHR have stressed the attack has been conducted by the regime forces in cooperation with its allies, while the UN emphasized that the responsible for the crime should be held accountable and sent to justice as soon as possible.

Though many years passed on the massacre, the file has been still enclosed and no one was held accountable. On the other hand, the Syrian opposition called on for bringing the head of the regime into criminal court and run an integral international investigation while the US has only expressed its worries and called on the regime to hand out its storage of chemical weapons for not carrying out any anti-military strikes.

Brigadier Ahmad Hamadah in interview with SOHR has wondered of misusing the chemical weapon, which is part of the internationally prohibited mass destruction weapons in wars for targeting the unarmed civilians in Zamilka, Arbeen, Douma and al-Sham and killing 1,551 in one shot, noting that by using such weapons, the regime has spoiled the international law and Obama red lines.

He added that, “it is painful that the perpetrator is not just still free, but he is the president of the country. The disarming show hasn’t prevented him from using the same weapons several times in Saraqeb, Khan Shaikhoon, al-Lutmanah and other places.”

He condemned what has been called a suspicious silence especially after the issuance of 2018 decision that the crime will be tackled according to the seventh chapter, adding that weapon is still available and the murderer is still existed and other players are blessing his presence while the victim are waiting for fair trails.
He reiterated that the US considers the Iranian nuclear issue, which pushed Obama to trade the chemical file and al-Assad, while the Russians don’t care about liberty, dignity or life of the people. The Russians use that kind of weapons against their opposers and they support al-Assad under weak pretext for controlling Syria.

Hamada criticized the role of the Security Council that became controlled by the Russian and the Chinese veto, holding the international society and the world actors and the concerned organizations, the responsibility of the sufferings that al-Ghouta has went through. He called for holding accountable those who used the chemical weapons against the innocent civilians and send all the criminals to the international justice.

On the other hand, professor Ibrahim Muslim, Syrian political researcher and opposition activist has commented on the negative role of the international community in veiling the facts related to the chemical massacre that happened in al-Ghouta.

He said the international community is dependent on the permanent members who own the veto right, wandering, “where was the international society when the regime forces and its proxy factions from the Turkish Iranian or the Russian sides, committed al-Ghouta massacre or the other crimes.”

He stressed that the Syrian opposition activist stressed that most of massacres have been documented by the UN institutions but holding the perpetrators accountable is depending on using the Russian veto right, adding that those massacres have been used as pressure cards by the main actors in Syria to serve their political agenda.

Muslim has held the international society, the scattered Syrian oppositions that is dependent on the real actors in Syria, especially Turkey, Iran and Russia full responsibility for the massacre.

From his side, Lawyer Tariq Haj Bakri told SOHR that the regime and its loyal inside or outside Syria should bear the responsibility for the al-Ghoutah massacre, noting its an international shame that chemical weapons are used against the people who flocked to the streets to demand freedom and good living conditions and ouster of military regime.

He added that for more than seventy times, al-Assad regime has used internationally prohibited weapons to murder his people and ignored all the international resolutions.

Bakri added that the easiness of the international reactions and not punishing the criminals have turned Syria into a fertile land for groups of hardliners and international and domestic struggle while Damascus hasn’t find anyone who can deter the unfairness at the political or the legal levels along with absence of accountability principle. The chemical massacre forms a model of escaping punishment.

The legal expert stressed that the regime used chemical weapons in 2013 when it was very weak and was about to collapse after losing nearly 75 percent of the country’s swaths that had turned into hands to the opposition and the warring factions, referring to large international negligence in absence of real international willing to held the responsible accountable.

He added that the international society, especially the US, wanted to send the perpetrators to justice, they would have done it in the first moments before Waleed al-Moallam has told Moscow that Syria had agreed to sign ban chemical weapon agreement and that Syria is ready to hand over its storing weapons with two year grace.

At the moment, Iran has interfered with its forces and factions beside Hezbollah and has occupied the Syrian lands and protected the regime from hard collapse, and then Russia has interfered with its ground and air forces that committed crimes harder than the chemical weapons, he added.

He accused the international community of negligence and collaboration systematic to keep the Syrian regime part of the international security order about the Middle East, because al-Assad change means changing the regional order. Most of the people who supported that theory, were either governments that has no interest in the regime fall because they have been living the same concept of dictatorship along with governing its people with iron fist.

Such governments have opposed the ouster of the regime fearing that fire of protests might expand their lands, he added.

He concluded that, “ the US and Russia should bear the responsibility of the sufferings that the Syrians have been encountering till today. Since east al-Ghouta massacre, the people hasn’t been able to direct his compass after the international interventions have exhausted them and their fate has become dependent on the acting countries in the Syrian file, while the Syrian people has been abandoned alone in the war with the regime.

SOHR activists had strong clear message in unveiling the traitors and those who contributed in the occupation of their country.

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