Ambassador Richard Erdman
U.S. Senior Area Advisor for Near Eastern Affairs
New York, New York
October 26, 2022
The United States thanks the Commission of Inquiry for their valuable documentation, particularly of the ongoing atrocities perpetuated by the Assad regime and for their advocacy on the fate of the missing and detained in Syria.
In this regard, I want to say right up front that we welcome the Secretary General’s report. We welcome the call to strengthen existing measures and to establish a new UN mechanism focused on clarifying the fate of missing persons and adequately supporting their families. We are committed to advancing progress with our partners on this issue. We agree that any measure to address this tragedy requires a coherent and holistic approach that goes beyond current efforts.
We strongly condemn violations and abuses of detainees in regime facilities. They include torture, gender-based violence, and enforced disappearances. They are perpetrated to punish, spread fear, and stifle dissent, and they affect nearly every family.
The Assad regime must provide information on the fate and whereabouts of those missing and disappeared. It must free those who remain alive and arbitrarily detained. And it must release the remains of those killed in custody to their families.
Progress on the plight of detainees, the missing and disappeared, is critical.