|Oswaldo Payá Sardiñas and Harold Cepero Escalante|
We welcome the conclusions of the Report of the independent international commission of inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic and particularly the observation that what was a “conflict in the Syrian Arab Republic, once between the Government and a limited number of anti-Government armed groups, has morphed into multiple shifting conflicts involving countless actors and frontlines,” and we are in complete agreement with the report that “the regional conflagration, of which the commission has long warned, illustrates the fallacy of a military solution.”
The disaster in Syria did not arise yesterday but is the long term result of the failure to have human rights respected there.
Unfortunately other areas exist that can also unexpectedly erupt into regional disasters. Years of freedom of expression and association being systematically outlawed, arbitrary detentions constant, along with politically motivated beatings, torture and extrajudicial killings lead to destabilizing responses.
The 2012 deaths of Oswaldo Payá and Harold Cepero have not been cleared up. Sonia Garro, a lady in white, remains jailed without trial since 2012 and Angel Yunier Remon Arzuaga, a musician, has been jailed for his dissenting views since March 2013.
Bassil Dacosta, Robert Redman, Génesis Carmona and Geraldine Moreno were the first shot and killed by government agents in their country in 2014.
Since February 12, 2014 forty three youths have been killed while protesting rising insecurity and vanishing rights in their country. Over 5000 have been injured and 3,000 arbitrarily detained.
Investigations are needed into the circumstances surrounding the deaths of 43 Venezuelan students and Cuba’s Oswaldo Paya and Harold Cepero.
Ms. Garro and Mr. Arzuaga should be freed.
These situations in Cuba and Venezuela require the Human Rights Council´s attention before they spiral out of control.