Saturday, 16 April 2016

‘Accountability and Transitional Justice’ Seen Key to Sustained Peace in Syria

 'The solution to the situation in Syria should include a comprehensive process for accountability and transitional justice, according to Mazen Darwish, President of the Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression.

Darwish noted that at the Geneva talks, everyone is going “around the main topic, without discussing the real solution.” He stressed that there is no easy way to reconciliation. “You cannot press end to this conflict and then expect everything to be right again,” he added.

 In order to have real solutions and to prevent the resurgence of another civil war, questions regarding the Kurdish population, political transformation, accountability, and reconciliation need to be addressed, according to Darwish. If these underlying issues remain unaddressed and “do not take into consideration the transitional justice, then we will just have ticking bombs for the future,” he said.

 He stated that the only way to protect the Syrian minorities is to hold the regime accountable, “not by extermination of the majority or by rewarding those who committed crimes against the humanity and letting them go with those crimes.”

 “Putting the Syrian people in front of only two options, dictatorship or terrorism, is unethical, immoral and unacceptable,” said Darwish. He highlighted the importance of peace in Syria for Europe and the international community: “This world won’t be alright without peace and development in Syria. Even here in the US, or in Europe, or in any place in the world, we need democracy and peace inside Syria to have democracy and peace in the whole world.”

 According to Darwish, if the Syrian citizens who are looking and willing to fight for freedom and democracy for the future are defeated, then everyone will be defeated. “No one would benefit from that except for terrorism.” As such, the removal of dictators and the defeat of terrorism are linked. “If we are really serious to fight ISIS and its ideology, we should guarantee that dictatorship should be defeated first,” he said.'

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