4 March 2020
WAR IS NOT A SOLUTION
We all were concerned that the potential of the civil war in Syria, on-going since 2011, to turn into a war between Turkey and Syria. The process that began with the Grand National Assembly’s decision to grant the government the mandate to carry out cross-border operations has now transformed into a de facto hot war even though it is not officially expressed as this would lead to major problems with regard to international conventions.
The only viable method for the states and governments to resolve conflicts and problems among themselves is the method of dialogue and negotiations. For this, they always have a valuable tool such as diplomacy in their hands. However, sometimes diplomacy and prudence are set aside and forcible methods are used and thus it is assumed that the issues can be resolved by means of the military forces.
Wars are traumatic incidents leading to grave misery and destruction whereby human rights violations are intensified and many lives are lost. For this reason, the international mechanisms should be alerted and pushed to their limits in order to resolve the issues between the countries through dialogue and diplomacy.
War is a human tragedy that costs the lives of thousands and that displaces millions making them refugees.
We are deeply concerned that the instrumentalization of the refugees and the on-going state of war have deepened the human rights violations continuing in the region and created the fear from total war.
At this point in time, it is seen that various circles and groups are in an effort to mould the public opinion through the militaristic broadcasts and publications in the media and the explicitly pro-war campaigns. We have seen in the recent wars around us that such initiatives that have proven to lead to many catastrophes in history always bear the potential to enrage the society.
The asylum seekers and refugees should not be used as a political leverage and the barriers before the Syrians and other nationals taking refuge in Turkey to go to safe third countries should be eliminated for the recognition of their rights guaranteed by the international conventions. The refugees who are stuck up at the border gates without any proper arrangement and who are willing to go to Europe should be prevented from using unsafe methods such as human traffickers.
We hereby remind that the obligations of the states do not cease at their border gates. Therefore we invite all states hiding behind the readmission agreements signed, including Turkey and the EU States, to adopt policies respecting human dignity and protecting the rights and freedoms. We urge everybody to be responsive to the issue that we all face the risk of being dragged into an irreversible and relentless process.
Association for Monitoring Equal Rights, Rights Initiative Association, Human Rights Association, Human Rights Agenda Association, Citizens Assembly