The Syrian Women’s Political Movement Statement Condemning Violence and Racist Incidents Against Syrians in Turkey


The Syrian Women’s Political Movement (SWPM) strongly condemns the escalation of racial violence and discrimination against Syrian refugees. Some Turkish cities have witnessed attacks on Syrian women and men, as well as the destruction of their property. Recently, the migration directorates in the cities of Gaziantep and Kilis forcibly deported hundreds of Syrian refugees to northern Syria. Many of these actions have been documented as legal violations of the temporary protection system and human rights.

Turkish and Syrian media have confirmed that the forced deportations in Gaziantep are being carried out by the migration directorate following a statement issued by 41 Turkish civil society organizations on June 17. These organizations warned of the demographic, social, and economic impact of the presence of Syrian refugees in the city, calling for a review of policies towards them and facilitating their voluntary return to their homeland. This statement came days after remarks made by the leader of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), Devlet Bahçeli, on June 11, indicating that they pose a threat to the demographic composition of Turkish society. This confirms that racism in Turkey is driven by economic and political factors.

Syrian women and men in Turkey suffer significant psychological harm, as the idea of returning to Syria causes them extreme fear due to the ongoing unsafe conditions there. This is especially true after recent Turkish statements about lifting the isolation of the Syrian regime and opening trade crossings, which led to widespread protests in northern Syria. These protests reflect popular anger and frustration and underscore the urgent need for a comprehensive political solution that guarantees everyone’s rights and achieves justice and peace in Syria.

Syrian Women refugees, in particular, are subject to increased forms of violence, discrimination, exploitation, and repeated assaults in Turkey. Recent events, for example, have had mothers deported without their children. These situations lead to severe psychological and social impacts on women, threatening their stability and future.

The SWPM condemns the exploitation of Syrian refugees as pawns in internal political conflicts and emphasizes the necessity of respecting human rights and adhering to international treaties that ensure the protection of refugees.

We, in the Syrian Women’s Political Movement, call on the Turkish government to take immediate measures to protect Syrian refugees from violence and discrimination. We also urge the international community to monitor the situation and ensure that refugees are not subjected to further violations. We call on European countries and the international community to provide the necessary support to Turkey to face these challenges and to enhance opportunities for resettling refugees in safe places.

Additionally, we call on humanitarian organizations to provide protection for women exposed to violence due to recent events and to offer psychological and social support to Syrian refugees to help them overcome these hardships and challenges.

The SWPM emphasizes the importance of keeping the crossings between Turkey and northwest Syria open, as these crossings remain a lifeline for millions of Syrians. It is also important not to react negatively towards all residents of the region because of the protests that have taken place.

We affirm in the Syrian Women’s Political Movement that Syrians in Turkey should be treated with dignity and respect and granted their basic human rights. Without a comprehensive political solution in Syria that ensures a safe environment and voluntary return to their original homes in their homeland according to international resolutions, particularly Security Council Resolution 2254, the tragedy will continue.


General Secretariat of the Syrian Women’s Political Movement  

Tuesday, July 2, 2024