Don’t Let Syria Down
“My name is Liqaa’. I had to flee from Syria and leave behind my home, my family, my life. I live with my husband in Za'atari refugee camp, and just gave birth to our first child. Our children are crying for peace, but I don’t want mine to have to cry for it. We’ve shed enough tears and blood already. What we need is an end to the suffering. That is my dream.”
Update, 20 September: 100,000 signatures
Thanks to support from people like you in over 150 countries around the world, we now have over 100,000 signatures* in support of Syria peace talks – roughly equivalent to one for every man, woman and child killed in the conflict to date.
We’ve passed this milestone at a critical time. The deal to remove Syria’s chemical weapons stockpile, brokered by US Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, proved that international diplomacy on the Syria crisis can work when world leaders put their minds to it.
Now we need your help to tell Presidents Putin and Obama to set a date for inclusive peace talks on Syria. They’ve promised to “make progress” on a second Geneva Peace Conference. Now, they must use the opportunity of the United Nations General Assembly to unite and set a date for talks that bring all parties to the conflict to the table.
The chemical weapons agreement is a step in the right direction, but it’s just that – one step. More than 100,000 people have been killed – largely by conventional weapons - since the Syrian conflict began two and a half years ago. The only way to end the bloodshed for good is for all involved to prioritize a negotiated political solution.
*Across Change.org, Oxfam and Tearfund websites
Update, 30 August: a political solution in Syria is now more urgent than ever
The recent escalation of violence in Syria has underscored the terrible suffering endured by the Syrian people, and reinforced the need to urgently find a political solution to this intensifying conflict.
There is a clear risk that governments ratcheting up the rhetoric and preparing for military intervention could make the situation in Syria worse. More than 100,000 lives have already been lost and more than two million people have been forced to flee to neighboring countries. Any further escalation of the conflict could increase serious and life-threatening risks for civilians, and further undermine regional stability. Instead, we urge President Obama, President Putin and other world leaders to intensify peaceful efforts to find a political solution to the crisis through diplomacy and dialogue.
It’s time for leaders to show courage against the tide of war: urge President Obama and President Putin to push for peace talks today.
Politicians pledged to help find a political solution to the Syria crisis months ago, but promises of a peace summit have come and gone without any noticeable action.
Please urge President Obama and President Putin to put their differences aside, and throw their political weight behind making the peace talks a reality, and a success. As organizers of the peace talks, the Presidents must work together with all parties to the conflict to urgently finalize a timeline. Failure to do so will mean yet more bloodshed and suffering for millions of Syrians.
The conflict has already claimed at least 100,000 lives. The number of people just like Liqaa’ who are fleeing violence and needing humanitarian aid is rising every day. The escalation of violence in recent weeks only serves to reinforce the urgency of finding a political solution to this conflict.
There will be no end to the suffering unless real progress is made soon.
1. Russian President Vladimir Putin, US President Barack Obama and UN/League of Arab States Envoy to Syria Lakhdar Brahimi must use their political influence to get all parties to the Syria conflict around the table for talks on finding a solution to this crisis.
2. For talks to be a success, they must include representatives of the peaceful majority of Syrians, including women’s groups and refugees, who want this nightmare to end.
3. The talks should be backed unequivocally by the international community, who must refrain from any acts or statements which risk undermining them.
Meanwhile, world leaders must do everything they can to ensure that all people affected by the crisis can access the humanitarian aid they so urgently need.
Please sign our petition now. We’ll deliver this petition to President Putin and President Obama, copying it to the UN/LAS Envoy to Syria and G8 leaders, calling on them to work with all parties to the conflict to make the peace talks a success.
For lasting peace to be achieved, the peace process should ensure equal representation from all sides in the conflict, involving men and women from all of Syria’s diverse communities, and including those who have already been forced to flee the country. In the mean time it is vital all sides make every effort to ensure people can access the humanitarian aid they need.
Please do everything you can to make the peace talks a reality, and a success.