On International Women’s Day, we pay tribute to women human rights defenders in Syria and in refugee communities. We reaffirm our solidarity with Syria women human rights defenders and stand in appreciation for the courage we have seen in their ongoing defense of their rights and the rights of their societies in a place that punishes WHRDs with death, arrest, torture and starvation. The militarization in Syria has also placed many women human rights defenders at risk, as they face the intersection of the oppression of patriarchal society and gender-based violence linked to the conflict.
Women human rights defenders face violations denying them their basic rights to security and safety ranging from the threat of arrest, kidnapping, indiscriminate shelling, and the endless siege in Syria, leading to deportation and racist violence in countries of asylum. All parties are involved in the attack on women human rights defenders, whether the regime or non-governmental parties, and armed militias.
On this day, we invite you to salute Syria women defenders by writing a letter to them on a white paper, taking a picture and then sharing it on your social media with the hashtag #WithSyriaWomen and #WithSyriaWHRDS or send the pictures to our page. Let us stand together with women human rights defenders inside and outside Syria to reject the normalization of violence against them and the media blackout imposed on their vital struggle for human rights in the region, and to affirm that, despite the increasingly hostile context in the region, we still hold on to solidarity among WHRDs.