In a full day of panel discussions on Capitol Hill, Syrian activists and aid workers from near and far spoke out to share their experiences from the ground in Syria and to inform policymakers. The event, entitled "Way Forward in Syria: Implications for Policymakers," provided a rare opportunity for Congressional offices and think tank analysts on Capital Hill to hear directly from Syrian civil society, especially since the Senate Foreign Relations Committee's hearing on Syria earlier that week had included no Syrian speakers.
The event was hosted by the Syrian American Council, the Democracy Council, and the Global Peace and Development Charitable Fund to bring together Syrian doctors working in the trenches, Syrian activists with real local legitimacy, and numerous experts who have been studying conditions on the ground. Zedoun Al Zoubi of the Union of Syrian Medical Relief Organizations, Marcell Shehwaro of the Kish Malek organization that operates in northern Syria, and Ayman Abdel Nour of Syrian Christians for Peace were just a few of our many distinguished guests.
Staffers from numerous congressional offices were also present at the event and participated actively in the discussions. The Syrian American Council, along with its partners, endeavors to bring the voices of Syrians inside Syria to Washington, D.C. policymakers at the highest levels. We are glad that we were able to host such a successful event that brought together Syrian voices from the ground and U.S. policymakers.