THE VOICE OF THE SYRIACS / Chairman’s Message (13.9.2012)

Dear readers, The Syriac people have survived many difficulties and dangerous situations in the past 3 months. The Syriac people (the indigenous Christian people in Syria) are being targeted and suppressed by the forces and different powers who are now active in Syria’s political arena. They have no power to protect themselves or any other power to offer them security.

Due to the escalation of clashes in Aleppo (the second largest city in Syria) a few Syriac families have been killed. There is also a new trend of kidnapping Syriac people in that area and asking for ransom. When the ransom is not paid, the Syriacs are killed.

The Syriac people are living terribly in Syria and are in a panic. That`s why the last few months have seen an increase in emigration. Anyone who can find a way to escape will emigrate. With such terrible living conditions, the Syriac people are struggling for their rights. The Syriac’s passive, peaceful approach has truly led to their slow demise and suffering throughout the last century.

Two examples illustrate this. In the genocide of 1914-15, the Syriacs In Turkey, even without any form of defense, survived a genocide and changed the demography of their homeland. Secondly, in the last few years, the suffering of our people in the Iraq war has resulted in blown up churches and murdered innocent victims, including religious leaders. As a result of the war, more than 60 percent of our people emigrated and scattered in the world.

In order to not repeat in Syria the same suffering of the above given terrible experiences, nowadays our people struggle for their rights equally as other national and religious people and communities. But the Syriac people without support of the Western World on their own and single handed, can`t achieve getting their rights and recognition.

For the Syriac people to get their rights in Syria, we as the European Syriac Union (ESU), providing factual information to the several and different international organizations, are trying to support our people. In effect, the rest of the world will obtain more objective information about our people and other people too.

Meanwhile, we organized several rallys and demonstrations in front of the Syrian Embassies in Europe against the Baas Regime. The aim of those activities were to announce the rights of Syriac people and to demand the release of the members of the Syriac Union Party in Syria. Our demonstrations took place in Sweden, Belgium, Switzerland and Germany to appeal to the world about the unjustness and persecutions which are made by the Baas Regime against the Syriac people. We carry on our activities in Brussels by a demonstration in front of the European Parliament in order to announce the voice of the Syriac`s in Syria to the world.

The Syriac`s people struggle, which began in Syria by the leadership of the Syriac Union Party in Syria, is to demand the rights of our people. Those political demands and activities which took place in Syria let the Syriacs’ demands be heard by the opposition of Syria.

This month, the members and followers of the Syriac Union Party in Syria have occupied the Syrian Embassy in Stockholm, Sweden. The aim of this activity was to appeal to stop the persecutions, the murders and the cruelties made by the dictatorial Baas Regime, and to notify the world that there are not only Arabs and Kurds in Syria but Syriac`s as well which are suffering from violent injustice. The Syriacs constitute 13 percent of the Syrian population.

Lahdo Hobil – Volume VI – Issue 25 – August 2012

The Voice of the Syriacs Volume 6 – Issue 25 page 2

Concerning the latest decision of the Supreme Court 20th Juristic Chamber against Mor Gabriel monastery, a group of Turkish Intellectuals called in a press conference on July 10th in Istanbul. The press conference took place at Cezayir Lokantası, Hayriye Cad. No 12, in Galatasaray-Beyoğlu.

The organizators, Altan TAN, Prof. Dr. Baskın ORAN, Prof. Dr. Cengiz AKTAR, Prof. Dr. Ufuk URAS, Tuma ÇELİK, told the public that the decision of Supreme Court 20th Juristic Chamber showed a lack of legal and ethical sense. In their call, the Turkish intelectuals mentioned that this decision was not the first injustice faced by the Syriacs. Until now, the Syriacs have not properly been able to voice their thoughts to the public on this matter.

They said that to this situation they believed that they should be in solidarity with the Syriac people and therefore they prepared a statement to the public and a signature campaign with the title “Turkey is homeland of Syriac people – Mor Gabriel Monastery is not Occupier”.

(To download this press release or for more information on how to solidarisewith this campaign, please have a look on the link of the website http://beraberbuyudukbuulkede.com. )

The goal of this campaign was to draw attention to the situation in which Syriacs live in their own land and to show that Turkish society is in solidarity with them.

The initiators of this campaign, by the time of this publication, collected 250 signatures from highbrow people within Turkey. At last the initiators made their call with following words:

“It is our basic responsibility and need to protect multi-cultural and different colours of society, standing against the policies of annihilation and denial, consolidating the fraternity among folks and establishing a democratic and free system. Finally, we kindly call to our compatriots to stand against the injustices vis-à-vis Syriac people and Mor Gabriel Monastery”.