A Coalition of Organizations Denounce the Normalization of the Assad Regime by the Kingdom of Jordan
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WASHINGTON, D.C., October 5, 2021 - On October 3rd, 2021, the Jordanian King Abdullah II received a phone call from Bashar al-Assad, leader of the Syrian regime responsible for torturing, killing, arbitrarily detaining, and displacing countless innocent civilians since the start of the peaceful uprising of the Syrian revolution in 2011. The undersigned organizations strongly reject and denounce the actions by the Kingdom of Jordan to normalize relations with the Assad regime, turning a blind eye to genocidal massacres against the civilians of their sister nation.
This was the first official conversation between the two leaders in over a decade and represents a decisive shift in Jordan’s policy towards the Assad regime which previously included the support of Western-backed forces opposing the Syrian regime with the objective of driving Assad from power. A statement released by the Jordanian palace announced the discussion touched on ways to enhance cooperation between the two countries. The statement also highlighted that King Abdullah II is now in support of Syria’s territorial integrity, stability, and sovereignty under the Assad regime.
This follows the official visit of the Syrian defense minister to Jordan two weeks ago where they discussed the promotion of trade and investment between the two neighbors, resuming direct flights to Syria by Royal Jordanian and the coordination of cross-border security. Soon after the visit, Jordan also announced the full reopening of its border with Syria, which had been closed since April 2015.
The undersigned organizations warn this will strengthen a sanctioned criminal regime that has deliberately killed, detained, tortured civilians, and is responsible for the massive refugee flows arriving in Europe. This further legitimizes the Assad regime and directly hinders accountability efforts in international courts against the Assad regime for its war crimes and crimes against humanity as well as sets a dangerous precedent for other countries considering having relations with Syria. The organizations also call on United States government officials and congressional representatives to join the objection, given that normalization with the Assad regime is openly against US policy and dangerous for US national strategic interests.
Celeste Brevard, Director of Communications, Syrian Emergency Task Force
Jenny Lindell, Grassroots Advocacy Officer, Syrian American Council
Organizations signing on to this statement include:
Americans for a Free Syria
Citizens for a Secure and Safe America
Civilian Council for American Security
Free Syria PAC
Syria Faith Initiative
Syrian American Council
Syrian Christians for Peace USA
Syrian Emergency Task Force
Syrian Institute for Progress