A coalition of Syrian civil society, activists and lawyers have filed criminal complaints in Germany against some high-ranking Syrian officials under the principle of universal jurisdiction. A first step towards justice for the victims and survivors of all crimes committed in Syria.
No matter how complex and religiously driven the conflict in Syria may seem, its basic constellation is this: A regime with powerful allies wages a war of annihilation against wide parts of its own population. How could it get to this point? And what is the very least we can do?
Over the past years, tens of thousands of men, women and children in Syria havee become subject to forced disappearances in Syria. On July 12, the film "Syria's Disappeared" was screened in which survivors of Syrian prisons and relatives of some tortured to death speak out.
Lebanon has seen political stagnation and sectarian tensions for years. Additionally, the country is deeply affected by the war in Syria. To gain a more nuanced understanding of the situation in the country, the Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung organized a study tour to Lebanon in October 2016.
While the privileged few may cross legitimately by simply presenting their passport, for most, borders present difficult if not insurmountable hurdles. Furthermore there are plenty of other lines of division: social, ethnic, religious and ideological. Any border is a painful memory of the fact that it is not an individual’s choice to define which side he or she is on.
Torture and sexualized violence are part of everyday life in Syrian prisons. However, human rights violations committed by the Assad regime play no role at the Geneva peace talks. With this in mind, Barbara Unmüßig, calls for women to be included as peace negotiators.
We cannot quarantine ourselves from the instability that reigns south and east of Europe. Europe must strike a new balance between idealistic foreign policy and realism. The opening address of the 17th Annual Foreign Policy Conference.
Five years after the start of the Arab Spring, the optimism of the disillusionment has given way. Given the never-ending violence, the return to authoritarian forms of rule or even failing states the "Arabellion" is considered a failure.