The Head of the Coordination Agency for the Return of Displaced Syrians, Local Administration and Environment Minister, Hussein Makhlouf, said that the return of displaced Syrians to the country is a priority for the government, and that the doors are open for all Syrians to return safely.
In a press conference on Monday, Makhlouf said efforts are focused on returning displaced Syrians from abroad, and that the government is working to simplify the procedures for their return and provide them with accommodation via programs that should help them find jobs and improve their living conditions.
The Minister said that as more areas are being liberated from terrorism and becoming safe once more, the government is working to rehabilitate these areas, and these efforts have already resulted in the return of more than 3 million internally-displaced citizens to their homes in Aleppo, Aleppo countryside, Raqqa countryside, Deir ez-Zor, Damascus countryside, Homs, and Lattakia.
Makhlouf asserted that Syrians abroad can return safely, and what applies to Syrians inside the country applies to those abroad, noting that Syrians are currently returning via border crossings as individuals or groups.
For his part, Agency member and Deputy Foreign and Expatriates Minister Fayssal Mikdad said that the Syrians who left were forced out by terrorism and that the economic sanctions on Syria have also had a negative impact on Syrians’ livelihood, adding that any aid provided to Syria must be unconditional.
Mikdad asserted that the Syrian government will facilitate the return of displaced Syrians in coordination with the UN, adding that both the government and the UN agree that this return must be voluntary and preserve the dignity of everyone.
In turn, Agency member and Director of the Political Administration for the Syrian Arab Army Maj. Gen. Hasan Hasan called on Western governments to revoke their sanctions on Syria and to help Syrians return to their home, adding that providing job opportunities will be an incentive for citizens to return.
This article was edited by The Syrian Observer. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.