The European Parliament will vote in its June 15 session on a resolution condemning human rights abuses in Syria. The resolution will reportedly call for the immediate release of the Beirut-Damascus Declaration detainees (Arabic. Elaph, via "Free Syria," 6/13/06). It will also call on the Syrian regime to review all the cases of political prisoners and to release all prisoners of conscience.
The resolution will express its displeasure with the Syrian's regimes treatment of human rights activists and will also ask the regime to give guarantees that all prisoners are treated well and not beaten or tortured, as well as guarantees of their right to meet with their families, lawyers, and doctors.
The Parliament's resolution will also ask that the EU Association Agreement with Syria be cancelled unless human rights conditions in Syria improve. It will also ask the EU Commission to monitor and report annually on the human rights situation in Syria and make sure that Syria abides by the conditions of the Euro-Med agreement which call for the respect of human rights and democratic principles.
Representatives from the Syrian Democratic Coalition will attend the session.
Meanwhile, the temporary committee of the Damascus Declaration issued a statement in which it thanked the EU for its firm position in support of prisoners of conscience and opinion in Syria (Arabic. AKI, 6/13/06). The statement criticized the regime's media campaign against the Beirut-Damascus Declaration and its signatories, and described the regime as a "closed structure resistant to and incapable of change." (Arabic. "Free Syria," 6/13/06). "As such," it added, "the regime relies on a single mechanism in dealing with the Syrian interior, which is repression and arrests."
The statement went further saying that the regime's policy of cracking down is but a sign of its weakness and of the magnitude of the crisis in its relationship with Syrian society. It added that the aim of the latest crackdown is to "deal a blow to the opposition forces working to bring about democratic change, and to paralyze their ability to move and operate."