Syrian Elections – Where Truth Goes to Die

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Syrian Elections – Where Truth Goes to Die

On 31st May we will be protesting across the world against the “election” called by the Syrian regime for 3 June.

We will be taking to the streets in over 50 cities across the world, and thousands more of us will be raising our voices across cyberspace against Assad’s #BloodElections.

In a democracy leaders are judged on their record – so what is Assad’s record?

• MASS KILLING. A three-year war in which 140,000 people have died and two of Syria’s greatest cities – Aleppo and Homs – have been destroyed. This includes 80,000 civilians killed, among them

11,000 children – in the ruthless bombardment of neighbourhoods with weapons such as barrel bombs (barrels packed with high explosives and bits or iron bar) and the use of chemical weapons. These actions have been designated “Crimes against Humanity” by the United Nations.
• UNLAWFUL DETENTION. 50,000 people detained for the “crime” of criticising Assad, including 1,300 children. At least 1,600 detainees, including 40 children, have died in his torture chambers. (The statistics above draw on the work of the Violations Documentation Centre which meticulously records and documents Assad’s killings: but many go unrecorded – so the final figures may be even higher).

• HUMANITARIAN CATASTROPHE. 2.5 million people driven out of the country and into refugee camps. 6.5 million internally displaced – driven from their homes. In total almost half the people of Syria have been uprooted. 250,000 people living under siege, forced to the brink of starvation and beyond as Assad uses food as a weapon of war in order to punish those who oppose him

No leader taking part in a genuine election with that record would stand any chance of winning – but this election is a rigged travesty of democracy:

• The rules for the election were drawn up so that no serious oppositionist was eligible to stand
• Only two candidates have been allowed to stand against Assad – both of these are virtually unknown, and both have affirmed their loyalty to the regime and support for Assad’s war.
• To make sure that the election produces the “right” result it will be supervised by Assad’s five sets of secret police who hold unlimited powers to threaten, detain, torture, and kill.

Abdulaziz, of the Syria Solidarity Movement, said “The choice being offered in this election is between ASSAD or ASSAD or ASSAD. One third of the country has liberated itself from the dictatorship and will not be taking part in this farce. The Kurdish areas in the northeast have announced that they will not be taking part; nor will most of the 2.5 million refugees; and many of those displaced inside the country will not meet the government’s voting rules. In total almost 50% of Syrian citizens will be unable to vote in this election. This is not a Syrian election but a regime election. It will have no legitimacy and should be rejected by democrats everywhere.”

• Assad’s election is a #BloodElection
• 7 more years of Assad = 7 more years of blood and destruction
• Send the war criminal Assad to the International Criminal Court

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