In a press release on Sunday, the Syrian Expatriates Organization said the organization “is saddened, angered and deeply shocked at reports of a heinous massacre of over 300 civilians in Daraya, a town on the outskirts of Damascus.”
Activists state that civilians were killed by summary executions and sniper fire throughout Daraya by Assad forces, who stormed the area on Friday. According to Abu Kinan, a Syrian activist in Daraya, “Over 156 bodies have been identified so far. Among those killed were 19 women and 3 children. Some were executed in the Abu-Suleiman Al-Deerani mosque, where they had been seeking refuge. Others were killed in their homes as Assad forces went house to house,” Abu Kinan stated to SEO.
“The day of the Daraya massacre has gone down as the bloodiest day yet of the Syrian revolution, with over 400 people killed throughout the country,” said SEO Board Member Oubab Khalil. “We feel angry, shocked, and appalled. We feel as though our pleas for support from the international community are falling on deaf ears, to the detriment of the future of Syria, the Middle East, and the world.”
“Furthering our disillusionment, is President Obama’s recent statement that the “red line” for him to act in Syria is if chemical weapons were to be used,” Khalil added.
“Statements like this do not take into account the immediate and acute suffering of the Syrian people. Their safety should not be contingent upon the usage of chemical weapons. Statements like this also give Assad a green light to intensify his brutal assault and punish the people for supporting the democratic movement, as we have seen tragically today in Daraya, and throughout Syria for the past 17 months,” said Khalil.
The Syrian Expatriates Organization is a leading nonprofit organization of Syrian Americans and Syrian Canadians that reflects the diversity and talent of the Syrian nation. Its mission is to support the establishment of a free and democratic Syria. In addition, the SEO provides humanitarian relief to those in need and works to promote the social, political and economic development of Syria.