WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) confirmed that Turkey is committing crimes including ethnic and religious cleansing against the peoples of North and East Syria and called on the U.S. Government to press it to draw up a timeline for the withdrawal of its troops from the region.
Many reports have been issued by international human rights organizations and institutions describing daily violations and crimes committed by Turkish forces and their proxies in the Syrian National Army (SNA) in the areas it occupies.
Recently, USCIRF issued its latest report which included the Turkish violations, which stated, “The United States and the international community must take action against Turkey’s violation of religious rights and freedoms targeting Yazidis, Christians, and Kurds in Syria.”
The report noted that the tragic repercussions of Turkish cross-border operations are not only targeting the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) but pose a clear threat to religious freedom in the region.
The Commission also stressed the need to pressure Ankara to set a timetable for its withdrawal from Syria, arguing that its presence in the country has worsened enforced disappearances and religious and ethnic cleansing of Yazidi, Christians, and other peoples in the areas it occupied.
The various peoples of North and East Syria have been subjected to mass displacement, hundreds of civilian deaths, and the continuation of the enslavement and force disappearances which were instituted under the Islamic State.