In the latest report of the UN Syria Commission of Inquiry released Thursday, the conditions in Syria were described as not fit for the safe and dignified returns of refugees.
This year’s upsurge in fighting and return to violence were marked as causes for alarm while the motive to unite the country or seek reconciliation was underlined to be absent. On the contrary, the commission continued to document torture, sexual violence, arbitrary detention, custodial deaths and enforced disappearances at the hands of the Assad regime.
The commission’s chair Paulo Pinheiro said parties to the conflict still “perpetrate war crimes and crimes against humanity and infringing the basic human rights of Syrians.”
Pinheiro added, “What we are seeing today in Syria is a war against the civilian population, many of the human rights violations and the crimes in terms of humanitarian law continue.”
In a relevant context, commissioner Karen Koning AbuZayd called attention to the intensifying violence, plummeting of economy, dry riverbeds, and “widespread community transmission of the COVID-19 that seems unstoppable by a health care system decimated by war with a lack of oxygen and vaccines.”
According to the report, bread prices strike more than 50% increase in food insecurity compared with last year.
Covering the period July 1, 2020-June 30, 2021 the report noted increased fighting and violence both in the northwestern, northeastern, and southern parts of the country.
In northwestern Syria, aerial bombardments and shelling struck medical facilities, markets, and residential areas.
Meanwhile, in the southwestern town of Daraa Al-Balad, Assad regime forces imposed a siege characterized by heavy artillery shelling. Tens of thousands of civilians were reported to be trapped inside without sufficient access to food nor health care, forcing them to flee.