Syrian President Bashar Assad met the high-level Russian delegation advocating for simultaneously hosting an International conference on refugees in Damascus, the capital of Syria. The proposed dates for the Russia-sponsored conference are Nov. 11-12.

Western countries and more than 5.6 million Syrian refugees are against an international conference on the return of refugees and displaced people ahead of a  political commitment to the 9-year-old war. Another 6 million Syrians have already been displaced inside the country.

A political process expedited by the UN has been blocked for a long time. Many Western countries blame the Assad government for this progress. Many Syrians and Western countries also believe that the situation in Syria is not yet ready for the mass return of displaced people who escaped the war. 


It is still unsure that some of the largest hosts of Syrian refugees, such as Turkey, would attend a conference held in Damascus. Syria alleges Turkey, which backs the armed opposition, of illegally deploying troops inside Syrian territory controlled by rebels.

According to the news state agency SANA “The different sides confer about efforts to assure the meeting achieves positive remarks that add to “alleviating the suffering of Syrian refugees and allowing them to return to their homeland and their normal life,” specifically after restoring stability and security in most of Syria.


Russia’s U.N. Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia states that “the forum will provide a platform for substantive dialogue with all stakeholders on all issues related to providing assistance to Syrians returning to their homes. Unfortunately, we are forced to say that due to the anti-Syrian bias a number of colleagues had immediately started to discredit this humanitarian initiative,” Nebenzia said. “We are receiving clear signals about the refusal of a number of Western states to even discuss this topic” even though it is in the 2015 Security Council resolution endorsing the roadmap to peace in Syria, he said.

Since the Syrian civil war officially began March 15, 2011, families have suffered under a brutal conflict that has killed hundreds of thousands of people, torn the nation apart, and set back the standard of living by decades. Now in its 10th year, the Syrian refugee crisis is the largest refugee and displacement crisis of our time.

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