The Syrian Women’s Political Movement Statement regarding the Rape of a Minor in Afrin
- updated: July 8, 2023
The Syrian Women’s Political Movement strongly condemns the heinous crime of sexual assault perpetrated against a thirteen-year-old girl in the countryside of Afrin on Friday, June 30, 2023, by a member affiliated with the faction “Al Hamza Division.”
This crime, in the eyes of The Syrian Women’s Political Movement, represents a complex act of violence resulting from the convergence of several factors, including her status as a minor, the deteriorating economic situation of her parents with special needs, and her Kurdish ethnicity in an area controlled by authorities outside the region’s jurisdiction. This incident is not an isolated one, and without holding the perpetrators accountable and addressing the issues of security and violence in areas controlled by armed factions under the National Army, it is likely to recur.
We call upon concerned authorities and human rights organizations to take immediate action and conduct a thorough investigation into this crime and all similar acts. We emphasize the need to bring the culprits to justice through a fair and impartial judiciary independent from military bodies, as mere assurances from military factions regarding their accountability are insufficient.
In order to ensure transparency in the judicial process and the fair and independent administration of justice, The Syrian Women Political Movement advocates for the presence of representatives from human rights organizations at the trials, monitoring the proceedings regularly. Moreover, it is crucial to allow independent media outlets to cover the events, as they play a vital role in reporting, documenting, and preventing the concealment of such crimes while increasing public awareness.
Furthermore, we hold the authorities responsible for the situations under their control and demand that they fulfill their responsibilities in protecting and ensuring the safety and security of all citizens, irrespective of race, religion, or gender. We urge armed factions to withdraw from civilian areas and refrain from exploiting childhood, perpetrating gender-based violence, and violating human dignity.
The Syrian Women’s Political Movement extends its appeal to all relevant parties and the international community, urging them to collaborate in achieving justice, peace, and comprehensive human rights in Syria. These endeavors cannot be achieved without a comprehensive political solution in alignment with UN Security Council Resolution 2254, which ensures stability and security in all regions of Syria.
Long live Syria, its land, and its people.
General Secretariat of The Syrian Women Political Movement
Saturday, July 8, 2023