This paper outlines Amnesty International’s key recommendations to the EU and EU member states participating in the Brussels IV Conference on Supporting the Future of Syria and the Region.
Over the past year, parties to the conflict in Syria have continued to commit serious violations of international humanitarian law with impunity. Between May 2019 and March 2020, the Syrian and Russian governments carried out attacks on civilians and civilian objects, including medical facilities and schools, in north-west Syria forcing hundreds of thousands to flee towards the Turkish border where they continue to live in dire humanitarian conditions. Amnesty International found that the actions of the Syrian and Russian government amount to war crimes. In addition, the Syrian government continues to arbitrarily detain people and subject tens of thousands of people to enforced disappearance. The actions of the Syrian government amount to crimes against humanity.
Refugees in Syria’s neighbouring countries continue to be subjected to barriers that hinder access to services and aid, leading many to live in dire conditions. These host states have also forcibly returned Syrian refugees in recent months despite this putting their lives and freedoms at serious risk.
Amnesty International calls on the EU and its member states to consider the following key issues at the forthcoming Brussels conference: