HIC-HLRN has cooperated with FIAN International to produce a joint stakeholder submission to the UN Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of the Arab Republic of Syria. This contributes to the second UPR cycle and marks the second HIC-HLRN submission on Syria.
HIC-HLRN’s previous report, in 2011, focused on land rights, in particular the institutional material discrimination against Kurdish Syrian since their mass dispossession in 1962, as well as the combined effects of climate change on rural Syrians, many of whom are Kurdish Syrians in 161 villages subject to drought and urban migration. The intervening four years in Syria have witnessed the devastation of an internationalized civil war that was only unfolding at the time of the first UPR review of Syria.
Despite the obvious land and natural resource components in the conflicts and human rights conditions in Syria, the members of the Human Rights Council omitted to observe many of the economic, social and rights issues and offered no recommendations on these key developments.
The 2016 report of HIC-HLRN and FIAN charts the conditions of human rights to adequate housing, land and food, three interdependent human rights that deserve review in the current UPR of Syria that will conclude in November 2016. The report finds that all parties to the conflict are liable for gross violations of these rights, including forced evictions, population transfer and using food as a weapon of war. The breakdown of agricultural infrastructure and local food systems has resulted from the violent destruction that also has caused such a loss of the built environment that is estimated to have surpassed 50 percent of the country’s housing stock.
Download the report here.
Photo on home page: A view of fertile fields in Syria, which was self-sufficient in wheat before the conflict. Source: Getty Images/C. Sappa. Photo on this page: Word Food Programme assistance to Syrian refugees. Inside Syria, at least 9.8 million people are food insecure, with hunger afflicting more than half of the people remaining in the country. Source: Reuters.