The Syria Trust for Development organization won the rank of international arbitrator in the elections of the International Evaluation Body within the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
The organization said, in a statement on Thursday, that it won the rank of international arbitrator in the elections of the International Assessment Panel for a group of non-governmental organizations in the Arab region, during the 15th Session of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage held in Paris.
Three NGOs were nominated under the Arab organizations category, and the Syrian Trust for Development won for a two-year period, through to 2022. The voting was done by an International Evaluation Body made up of 12 members.
The Evaluation Body undertakes the process of examining the nomination files submitted by all countries of the world, for inclusion on the lists of human heritage.
Syria Trust for Development is a non-profit and non-governmental organization, but it is directly linked to Asma al-Assad, the wife of the head of the Syrian regime, Bashar al-Assad.
Asma had promised compensation and grants to those affected by the fires in the Lattakia countryside. On Oct. 24, 2020, Syrian Trust for Development, which she runs, announced that it had completed collecting six billion Syrian pounds, according to SANA.
In early December, Syria Trust for Development announced that it had started distributing financial donations to those affected by the recent fires in Syria, in addition to distributing olive plants to which a letter written in Asma al-Assad’s own handwriting was attached.
Syria Trust for Development was established in 2001 after Bashar al-Assad came to power, and it obtained the legal license from the Ministry of Social Affairs in 2007.
Asma al-Assad has always spread political messages in support of the Syrian regime through the organization by giving speeches during events.
Syrians refer to the organization as ‘The First Lady’s Organization’ because she occupies the position of chairwoman.
Syrian Trust for Development presents itself as a non-governmental, non-profit Syrian organization that works to empower communities and individuals, in addition to involving them in development work, so that they can fulfill their role in building society.
In 2014, Syria Trust for Development won UNESCO’s Evaluation Body of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage award.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.