A University of Bedfordshire lecturer from Syria believes Britain should intervene in the country.
Dr Abdulmaten Taroun, a Senior Lecturer in Business Systems, said intervention is essential if Britain wants to remain a leading nation in human rights, democracy and international law.
He said he has been “living in fear” for his people since the 2011 revolution, and says “although no one would favour a foreign attack against their country, it may be the only option”.
Dr Taroun said: “Syrians are left with two choices: to be killed by Assad forces or to accept external intervention against his forces.
“It is a very, very difficult situation. Sometimes, as was the case last week when a chemical weapon attack took place in Damascus suburbs, I feel hopeless as I can’t do anything to ease the pain of my people.
“People are suffering and yet, we only sit and watch. This suffering must end soon and this seems only possible through intervention.”
Dr Taroun is against foreign troops landing in Syria, but accepts a specific foreign intervention could be in order to “deter and degrade” the regime’s ability of using chemical weapons and launching missiles against civilians.
He adds an intervention is likely to force the Syrian regime to agree on a political solution and give Syrians a chance to rebuild their country as a free and democratic state.
“We do not need someone else to fight our battle; we simply need help to free our country from the current dictatorship through dismantling its mass destruction weapons,” he added.
Dr Taroun said he was disappointed with Parliament’s decision not to back PM David Cameron’s motion, “as it sought to stop the use of chemical weapons, not to change the regime”.
However he respected the PM’s decision to listen the British people, but believes the decision to back down “will have a profound effect” for the UK internationally giving them less power in the Middle East specifically.
He said: “The answer (why Britain, specifically should help) is because the UK is one of few nations who have the privilege of doing something. If Britain wants to maintain the UK position as a leading nation in human rights, democracy and international law, they should take some risk as absolute certainty does not exist.
“While concerns regarding military act are legitimate, many British fail to recognise they are losing on the long term politically and economically.
“In addition to that, the type and scale of asked intervention is very limited. The Syrians are not asking for full involvement in their revolution; they are asking for some help. I think that failing to provide this minimal help will be translated as weakness and hesitation not wisdom.”
The project management specialist believes incorrect information in the British media led to yesterday’s decision too as not enough has been shown, and it has been portrayed as two equal sides.
He said: “The reasoning behind the voting was influenced by the Iraq war experience and the failure of the British media to show people that the conflict in Syria is a revolution against a dictator where people had to turn to arms due to regime cruelty.”
Conflict, as part of the wider Arab Spring, started back in March 2011, when protesters demanded the end to nearly five decades of the Assad family’s dictatorship.
Although the latest alleged use of a chemical nerve agent has attracted huge international attention, with over 1000 believed dead and 4000 patients, killing continues on a daily basis with an estimated 150 lives lost each day.
Doctor Taroun said there are 110,000 people confirmed dead, around 60,000 missing, around 200,000 detainees, 8 million refugees and internally displaced, 1.7 million housing unit destroyed and around $200 billion direct cost of the damage to the country’s economy and infrastructure.
Dr Taroun supports a charity, Syria Relief, providing help and support to Syrians in need, inside and outside of the country.
He said: “It is important to continue the humanitarian support to Syrians specially when taking into consideration the dire economic situation of the majority of Syrians,
“Millions live in awful conditions. This charity is trying to go beyond the Syrian government and get the aid straight to the people.”
To donate, text ‘SRLF11’ followed by the amount in pounds to 70070.
Visit www.syriarelief.com for more information.