A photo shared online by pro-Syrian regime accounts on April 11, 2021, shows overcrowding in front of al Karamah bakery in the Sleiba neighborhood of Latakia city with the customers queuing for bread ignoring the precautionary measures introduced to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic among the public.
SNHR notes that the Syrian regime’s Ministry of Internal Trade and Consumer Protection introduced a new initiative on September 8, 2020, to distribute bread to Syrian families using smart cards under the pretext of reducing the size of the crowds gathering in front of bakeries and enabling citizens to purchase bread in an organized and planned manner with only four loaves of bread per a day for every family.
SNHR notes that the bread crisis is one of the most suffocating economic crises imposed on the Syrian people, resulting from the regime’s own disastrous policies in leading the Syrian state, more particularly over the last ten years.
We can affirm that even while the Syrian regime continues to impose restrictions on the Syrian people in areas under its control, it still spends millions of dollars on its own expenses and on security services and the salaries of related personnel, despite their continuing practice of arbitrary arrests, enforced disappearances and torture, with millions dollars more dollars being spent on the ongoing military build-up around Idlib governorate.
In reality, the ruling regime is and will remain wholly indifferent to the suffering of the Syrian people. The international community must act to reduce the duration of this suffering by taking further effective political steps in order to help achieve an active political transition implemented according to a strict timetable which must not exceed six months by all parties in order to progress toward democracy and human rights which can guarantee stability, the return of IDPs and refugees, and the relaunching of the economy.