Geneva Meeting of Thematic Working Group 4: Protection Priorities for Syrians

The Civil Society Support Room (CSSR) Thematic Working Group (TWG) on ‘Protection Priorities for Syrians’ was established in October 2022. The purpose of the group’s creation was to leverage the CSSR’s broad range of experience and expertise on issues related to the protection of civilians, and to facilitate a space to discuss and identify key protection priorities, needs, and recommendations.

Following months of online collaboration, CSSR participants of the TWG on ‘Protection Priorities for Syrians’ met in person for the first time in Geneva for a three-day meeting from 2 to 4 May 2023. TWG participants engaged with the Office of the Special Envoy for Syria (OSE-Syria) leadership and team, provided updates on their work, discussed relevant policy recommendations, and presented a summary of their discussions and key recommendations to the OSE-Syria team, members of the International Syria Support Group (ISSG) and CSSR donors.

In their conclusion, the group emphasised that a political solution based on United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 2254 (2015) remains fundamental, and that there is no way out of the political deadlock without ensuring a safe environment for all Syrians and addressing several fundamental issues, which include:

  1. addressing the issue of the unlawful deprivation of liberty by all sides in the conflict;
  2. ensuring a safe, calm, and neutral environment as a necessary pathway to the return of refugees and internally displaced persons; and
  3. civil and identity documentation (including travel documents, civil status documents or property documents).