Damascus is hosting the International Conference on the Return of the Syrian Refugees with the participation of a number of countries in person or through video conference.
The camp led by the United States of America, the usual hypocrites for humanity, boycotting the conference and preventing the return of the Syrian refugees.
President Bashar Al Assad addressed the attendees of the International Conference on the Return of the Syrian Refugees that started today with the following speech:
Transcript of the English translation of President Assad speech:
Ladies and gentlemen, representatives of the countries participating in the conference,
I welcome you in Damascus dear guests, welcome in Syria which although, it has bled from long years of war, the cruelty of the siege, and the criminality of terrorism, it still cheers for meeting its true lovers and those who are truly loyal and who bear in their hearts, minds, and conscience the cause of humanity in every time and place.
In the beginning, I thank our Russian friends for their great efforts in supporting the convening of this conference despite all international attempts to foil it.
I also thank the Iranian friends for their efforts in this regard and for their true support which have contributed to easing the repercussions of the war and the impacts of the blockade.
I highly appreciate your coming to Damascus and your participation in this conference, and I mainly thank the states which have received Syrian refugees and embraced them, and whose people have shared their livelihood and job opportunities with the Syrians despite the economic suffering in those countries.
Dear participants, some states embraced the refugees based on ethical principles while other states in the West and in our region also are exploiting them in the ugliest way through transforming their humanitarian issue into a political paper for bargaining, in addition to making them as a source for money quenching their officials’ corruption without taking into consideration the real suffering lived by the Syrians abroad.
Instead of the actual work to create the appropriate conditions for their return, they forced them to stay through temptation sometimes or through exerting pressures on them or intimidating them, and this isn’t surprising as those governments have worked hard for spreading terrorism in Syria which caused the death of hundreds of thousands of its people, and displaced millions of them, those states can’t be logically the same ones which are the reason and the road for their return to their homeland, and their rejection to participate in this conference is the best evidence on that, the conference that seeks the goal for which they are crying falsely, which is the return of refugees.
If the issue of refugees according to the world is a humanitarian issue, it is for us, in addition to being a humanitarian issue, it is a national issue, we have managed over the past few years in achieving the return of hundreds of thousands of refugees, and today, we are still working relentlessly for the return of every refugee who wants to return and to contribute to building his/her homeland, but the obstacles are large as in addition to the pressures exerted on the Syrian refugees abroad to prevent them from returning, the illegitimate economic sanctions and the siege imposed by the US regime and its allies hinder the efforts exerted by the institutions of the Syrian state which aim to rehabilitate the infrastructure in the areas which had been destroyed by terrorism so as the refugees can return and live a decent life in normal conditions, and this is the main reason for the reluctance of many of them to return to their areas and villages due to the absence of the minimum basic requirements for life.
Despite all of that, the overwhelming majority of Syrians abroad today more than ever want to return to their homeland because they reject to be a ‘number’ on the political investment lists and a ‘paper’ in the hand of regimes which support terrorism against their homeland.
The issue of the refugees in Syria is a fabricated issue as Syria’s history and from centuries ago hasn’t witnessed any case of collective asylum, and despite that Syria, throughout its ancient and modern history, has suffered from successive occupations and continuous disturbances till the sixties of the last century, yet it has remained the place to which those who flee the disturbances and different crises resort, especially since the beginning of the twentieth century and the Ottoman massacres till the invasion of Iraq in the year 2003, and all of that history hasn’t mentioned any wars among the Syrians for ethnic, religious or sectarian reasons, neither before nor after the establishment of the Syrian state.
And as the objective conditions don’t lead to the creation of a situation of asylum, it was necessary for the Western regimes led by the American regime and the states which are subordinate to it from the neighboring countries, particularly Turkey to create fabricated conditions to push the Syrians to collectively get out of Syria, to find a justification for the interference in the Syrian affairs, and later to divide the state and transform it into a subordinate state that works for achieving their interests instead of the interests of its people.
Spreading terrorism was the easiest way, and it started by establishing the Islamic State terrorist organization in Iraq in the year 2006 under the patronage of the US which during the war on Syria joined other terrorist organizations such as the Muslim Brotherhood, Jabhat al-Nusra, and others, and they destroyed the infrastructure and killed the innocent people, in addition to paralyzing the public services intimidating the Syrians and forcing them to leave their homeland.
In the year 2014, and when the Syrian state seemed to be on its way to restore security and stability, these countries mobilized ISIS terrorist group with the aim of dispersing the armed forces and enabling terrorists to control a large part of the Syrian territory, the largest part of which has been restored thanks to the sacrifices of our national army and the support of our friends, this support which had played a great role in defeating terrorists and liberating many areas.
Today we are facing an issue which consists of three interconnected elements; millions of refugees who want to return, destroyed infrastructure worth hundreds of billions and which were built throughout decades, and terrorism which is still tampering with some Syrian areas.
The Syrian State institutions have managed to achieve acceptable leaps compared with their potentials in dealing with such a big challenge, along with the continued war against terrorism, it has offered facilitation and guarantees for the return of hundreds of thousands of refugees to their homeland through several legislations such as delaying the compulsory military service for a year for the returnees, in addition to issuing a number of amnesty decrees from which a number of those who are inside the homeland or abroad have benefited.
In parallel with and despite the illegal siege, the Syrian state has been able to restore the minimum of the infrastructure in many areas such as water, electricity, schools, roads, and other public services to enable the returnees from living even with the minimum necessities of life.
The more the potentials increase, these steps will be faster certainly, and their increase is connected to the receding in the obstacles represented by the economic siege and the sanctions which deprive the state of the simplest necessary means for the reconstruction and leads to the deterioration of the economic and living conditions in a way that deprives citizens of the decent livelihood and deprives the refugees of the chance to return due to the decrease in the job opportunities.
I am confident that this conference will create the appropriate ground for cooperation among us in the upcoming stage for ending this humanitarian crisis which was caused by the largest barbaric Western aggression which the world has ever known in modern history. This crisis, which at every moment affects every home in Syria and the conscience of every honest person in the world, will remain for us as Syrians a deep wound which will not be healed until all those who were displaced by the war, terrorism, and siege return.
I wish for the activities of the conference success through reaching recommendations and proposals which directly contribute to the return of the Syrians to their homeland so as Syria will become, by them and by those who stayed and remained steadfast over ten years, better than ever.
Again, thank you for attending, and God bless you.
End of the transcript.
Credit: Syria news agency SANA staff contributed to the translation.
The conference is attended by 27 countries and boycotted by the USA and its stooges who do not want to relieve the Syrian refugees suffering, they want to continue to invest in that suffering by blackmailing the Syrian government to give away concessions, mainly to recognize Israel, to decrease its cooperation with Iran and Russia, to abandon the Lebanese and Palestinian people’s right for resistance and return to their homelands, and to join the US camp of aggressors against other sovereign countries, and to achieve that, the USA and through its regional stooges want to either replace the Syrian leadership and Syrian government with a puppet regime or at least install its agents in decision-making posts in the Syrian government, and those are exactly what the Syrian people refused to do and have stood up for the USA and its camp of evil satellite states and has paid and still paying a hefty price for stopping the aggressors and reversing the domino effect of the anti-Islamic Muslim Brotherhood-led colored revolutions in the Arab world dubbed the ‘Arab Spring’.
During the conference, Russia pledged 1 billion dollars to help rehabilitate Syria’s electricity and basic services, Iran suggested to establish a fund for helping Syria rebuild its infrastructure, and Lebanese ministers cried of the economic pressure the Syrian refugees have caused on their economy, yet the Lebanese Minister of Foreign Affairs through a video call from Beirut and the Lebanese Minister of Labor from within the conference hall in Damascus failed to mention the criminal contribution of former Lebanese governments and Lebanese warlords in facilitating the terrorist attacks against Syria and abusing the Syrian refugees suffering in their country.