Aramean Christians again address UN Commission on Syria in Geneva

On Tuesday, 17 March 2015, the World Council of Arameans (Syriacs) (“WCA”) addressed the Commission of Inquiry on Syria under Agenda Item 4 of the Human Rights Council 28th Session at the United Nations Office in Geneva. After a number of UN Member States delivered their speeches, the WCA was honorably placed as number 1 on the list of oral statements given by NGOs. Jacob Harman, the WCA Delegate from Sweden, read aloud our intervention which reads: 

 Click here to download the PDF version. The video of this statement will be posted soon. 

Thank you, Mr. President!

The Report of the Commission of Inquiry on Syria documents some of the horrors of this proxy war that continues to be fought in Syria, the indigenous land of the Aramean Christians.

But the report does not go far enough in describing what is really taking place in Syria. Nor does it provide the names of the UN Member States who, as the COI has acknowledged, are covertly supporting terrorist groups such as Jubhat al-Nusra and ISIS.

Recently, U.S. Vice-President, Joe Biden, admitted that the U.S. allies provided billions of dollars to these terrorist organizations and their members. All this, while the civilian population of Syria is in desperate need of water, food, medicine and shelter.

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In the past four years, our NGO has frequently warned the Human Rights Council about the ethnic cleansing and genocide suffered by the Aramean people. Just last month, more than 30 vulnerable Christian villages in north-eastern Syria were again attacked by militant Islamists, who continue to kill and kidnap Aramean Christians.

Our question to the United Nations is: Can you ensure that there will not be another attack on the defenseless Christians of Syria, and can you stop the silence that permeates through this institution?

We are now witnessing the near death of Christianity in Syria, Iraq and other Middle Eastern countries. It is astonishing that the COI report is once again silent about this fact and about our two kidnapped bishops from Aleppo, who will be missing for two years on the 22nd of April.

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Syria’s indigenous Christians recommend a diplomatic solution of the conflict. We applaud U.S. Secretary of State, John Kerry, who called for direct talks with the Syrian Government. We applaud Russia for hosting peace talks in Moscow scheduled in April. We applaud the Holy See, Russia and Lebanon for their joint declaration on the persecution of the Middle Eastern Christians. And we applaud France for calling for a U.N. Security Council meeting on March 27 to discuss the plight of minorities in the Middle East.

The COI must urge the Human Rights Council and the Security Council to immediately stop this proxy war, and to take the necessary actions to achieve peace, security, stability and reconciliation in Syria. To conclude, we offer these three recommendations to the COI:

  1. Demand that UN Member States pay their dues for humanitarian aid and that it also reaches the Christian population of Syria in order for them to stay and survive in their homeland.
  2. Name and shame those States who support terrorists and the flow of weapons for non-State actors into Syria. Only peaceful measures will resolve this conflict.
  3. Commence the debate on creating a Christian Nation in the New Middle East that can protect the threatened Christians in their ancestral land. Given the horrific circumstances in which the Arameans Christians find themselves, such a state would be historically and legally justifiable.

Thank you, Mr. President!

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