The three-day visit of the World Peace Council (WPC) and the World Federation of Democratic Youth (WFDY) has concluded. As part of the solidarity visit that took place on 29-30-31 October, various institutions were visited in Damascus, information was received from the authorities and the representatives of the peace and youth movement expressed their solidarity.
Peace Committee of Turkey and Communist Youth of Turkey represented our country with two representatives in the international delegation. President of World Peace Council (WPC) Socorro Gomez, General Secretary Thanasis Pafilis and Executive Secretary Iraklis Tsavdaridis and president of World Federation of Democratic Youth (WFDY) Yakovos Tofaris were also in the international delegation.
Nearly 100 delegates from more than 40 countries participated in the visit which was organized by the National Union of Syrian Students and the Syrian Movement of Peace Partisans. The first day of the visit, the delegation visited Central Leadership of Baath Arab Socialist Party, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates, President of Syrian People Assembly and the Unknown Soldier Tomb.
The representatives of the WPC and the WFDY emphasized that the visit meant more than just solidarity with the Syrian people who struggled against imperialism. It is evident that the war in Syria has been won by the people and the victory of the legitimate Damascus government.
BA’ATH PARTY: “WE ALWAYS REPRESENTED WORKERS, PEASANTS AND PEOPLE”
In his speech at the Baath Party Head Office, General Secretary Hilal Hilal stressed that the Baath party's strength, stems from its ties with the working class, the peasants and the people. Hilal indicated that the term “dictator Esad” insistently uttered by the imperialist governments is a distortion. He said that the Baath party is represented in the parliament at 65 percent, and that the opposition parties are in the parliament too. Pointing out that the critical period in the war against Syria is over, the General Secretary of Baath Party added that the war was won by three factors and that these three factors were the people, the army and the leadership.
SYRIAN FOREIGN MINISTER: TURKEY CONTINUES TO SUPPORT THE TERRORISTS IN IDLIB
The delegation met with Walid Muallem, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates. Muallem stressed that Idlib has not yet been cleared of terrorists and that on this issue Turkey has a negative impact.
It was also stressed that the Syrian army is the only force to protect the borders of Syria and that only the Syrian government can find a solution to the political crisis. After Sochi agreement, the Constitutional Committee was created which included 50 people and Turkey supported opponent groups in this Committee insistently. Commenting on the Syrian summit held in İstanbul with the participation of Germany, France and Russia, Muallem said: “We will never give up our independence.”
Muallem also informed the delegation about the condition of the refugees’ situation and the state of the country’s reconstruction after war. He said that: “We are not waiting for the war to end completely to develop economic relations between countries. We will develop economic relations with Russia, China and India. And of course, we will never deal with the bloody imperialist actors in the process of restructuring the country. In general, we will develop the public sector and provide employment for the refugees that return back to our country. Work has started on the return of refugees, but the United States and the European Union are raising difficulties in this regard and they are still spreading disinformation about Syria. However, refugees from Lebanon began to return to Syria."
“LEADERSHIP OF ASSAD BROUGHT IN THE VICTORY, DESPITE THE WEAPONS OF IMPERIALIST COUNTRIES
Hammouda Sabagh, the Syrian Arab Republic Speaker of People’s Assembly, in his speech to the international solidarity delegation, stated that it was in Syria where the region's first parliament and also the first democratic constitution was implemented, adding that, at that time only women in Syria could run in the elections. There are nine political parties in the Syrian People's Assembly. Sabagh mentioned that the imperialist lies are founded on the thesis that Syria is not democratic but that the structure of the Syrian People's Assembly exposes these lies.
INTERNATIONAL SOLIDARITY CONFERENCE IN DAMASCUS UNIVERSITY
On October 30, peace and youth delegations met with students of Damascus University in the International Solidarity Conference. The conference started with a moment of silence for those who lost their lives in the war. Following that, the representatives of the peace and youth movement of many countries delivered speeches.
The president of World Federation of Democratic Youth (WFDY) Yakovos Tofaris said:
“The US, EU countries and Turkey launched a war for energy resources in Syria. What NATO tried to do in Yugoslavia, Iraq and Libya, they tried to do the same in Syria. In this direction, they lied about the use of chemical weapons against Syrian people. The events showed that not only Syria, but all the Middle East countries are under threat, because of their energy resources. The Iraqi and Palestinian issue was another aspect of the imperialist intervention. There was a great human tragedy in Syria, millions of people were forced to immigrate, were crippled or killed. The country's economic resources and infrastructure were destroyed, people were condemned to hunger. While claiming that they are helping refugees, the EU countries indeed pushed the life of refugees into more difficult conditions. We have not believed in their lies from the very beginning of the war and have always condemned the lies of the imperialist countries. As WFDY, we will always stand by the peoples against on imperialism."
WORKERS DID NOT STOP THE PRODUCTION DESPITE THE WAR
During the meeting in the General Federation of Trade Unions, the president of the Federation, made important statements about the development of the country’s economy during and after the war. He said that: “The refugee crisis did not take place because of the oppression of the Syrian government as the EU countries claimed but rather due to the fact that people lost their jobs because of the war. The anti-government demonstrations of 20 people were served by the corporate media as if they were protests nationwide, distorting the truth. War has affected the country's economy negatively. Bashar Al-Assad took measures to make workers' life easier, who could not go to workplaces controlled by terrorists. For all workers who were disabled due to conflicts, aid packages were prepared by using all economic possibilities and workers' families were provided with assistance.
Nevertheless, the decrease in salaries, the depreciation of money and the increase in prices, made life quite difficult for people and they had to immigrate. Throughout the war, the international media showed Damascus as a dangerous place, but contrary to what they claim, life continued despite all difficult conditions and in 2015, a large international solidarity meeting was held. In 2017, a second international solidarity meeting was held with the participation of workers from all over the world. All participants told the truth about Syria, when they returned to their country. Throughout the war, production was affected negatively, but in some factories, production did not stop, despite the attacks of terrorists. Workers defended their factories steadfastly and when the factories were rescued from terrorists, factories continued the production as before the war”
According to the President of the Federation, the Damascus government continued to pay salaries not only in the regions under the control of the government, but also in the areas where enterprises were shut down after falling under the control of jihadist groups. The President of the Federation also mentioned that there were many instances where workers prevented the dismantling and transfer of factories to abroad in areas under jihadist groups' control.
ASSAD: WE ARE CLOSE TO VICTORY
On October 31, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad hosted all the representatives in the People's Palace. In his short speech, Bashar al-Assad emphasized that after the collapse of the Soviet Union, the countries of the Middle East were disintegrated under the name of globalization and imperialist countries launched wars against the countries using campaigns of lies by the media. Bashar Al- Assad continued his speech:
“Syria is healing the wounds caused by the war. USA, European countries, the Gulf countries and Turkey supported the terrorists and our country turned into a fire-ground. We are very close to declaring victory thanks to the resolute 7-year long resistance of our people”
After his speech, Bashar Al-Assad answered the questions of the audience. Most of the questions focused on how the Syrian government could restructure the economy after the war. Bashar Al-Assad stressed that the economy would follow the mixed economy model and that they would employ the displaced people who return back home and that the force who waged war against Syria would never be involved in the process of reconstruction of the economy. Assad also mentioned that they started to work on the process of refugees’ comeback but there is still black propaganda made from European countries for Assad that claims that when refugees return back to Syria, they will be killed by the government.
At the final sitting held the last day, the objectives of the solidarity mission were discussed. An end of all the violence in the country and the liberation of all areas including Golan Hills and Idlib were emphasized. It was also concluded that it is necessary to strengthen the solidarity against imperialism in the countries of the delegation and the peoples of these countries should be informed about the imperialist lies and the latest developments of Syria. The event ended with the emphasis that when Syria completely become free, another meeting will be organized for victory celebrations.
The Syrian state television which gave a wide coverage to the conference, conducted many interviews with the delegates. Thanasis Pafilis, the General Secretary of World Peace Council and Aydemir Güler, the representative of Peace Committee of Turkey were hosted as guests in a newscast.
The delegates had the opportunity to visit the historical monastery in the Sednaya city, despite the busy schedule.
During the visit organized by the National Union of Syrian Students and the Syrian Movement of Peace Partisans, the delegates met with the general secretaries of the Syrian Communist Party and Syrian Communist Party (united), in a dinner.