STATEMENT: Dialogue is the only way towards an end of the violence in Syria

pcilogonewThe following statement was issued by Pax Christi International earlier today. 

Pax Christi International is deeply concerned about the latest events in Syria.

While we unequivocally condemn the use of chemical weapons, regardless of who perpetrated the attack, Pax Christi pleads with the nations of the world to recognize the responsibility and authority of the UN Security Council to address this egregious violation of international law and morality and to work with the United Nations to protect – without escalating the violence – the Syrian people. This should be done through urgent diplomatic efforts to stop immediately the flow of arms to both sides and to all militant groups and to bring all stakeholders in the conflict to the negotiating table.  Many states have helped fuel the armed conflict in Syria by sending weapons to the region; now it is time for the International community to cooperate fully on an arms embargo and to unequivocally back dialogue that alone can end the horrific violence.

As part of the political solution, serious consideration should be given to deploying an unarmed or minimally armed multinational police force to Syria to begin to secure zones of non-violence in support of Syrians committed to peace. We also invite Pope Francis to join with Christian, Muslim, and other faith leaders from around the world and from all traditions to assemble a peace force of faith and send it to accompany the Syrian people through this time of great danger and suffering.

Pax Christi urgently calls religious leaders – regardless of the specific community to which they belong – to use their moral authority to speak clearly and with urgency in private and in public for an end to violence; to strongly call for a political solution to the armed conflict; to support the creation of zones of non-violence; and to promote active campaigns of prayer, non-cooperation and public witness for an immediate end to the violence in Syria.

Pax Christi International also expresses its deepest solidarity with the people of Syria.  We pray for all who remain in Syria, for those who have fled the country, for all who have lost loved ones, for all who live in terrible fear for the future and, in a special way, for those courageous peacemakers who have resisted violence and who have tried to work for positive change in nonviolent ways.

Brussels, 29 August 2013

11 responses to “STATEMENT: Dialogue is the only way towards an end of the violence in Syria

  1. Hopefully, this fine message of Pax Christi will make it to our Christian leaders, many of them who list themselves as Catholic: Vice President Biden, CIA Director Brennan, White House Chief of Staff McDonough. Do they operate with a Christian conscience or simply follow the orders of the corporate-military system that has historically smothered individual conscience.

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  3. Will China and Russia cooperate with this approach? Would NATO be a more appropriate agency?

  4. Let there be PEACE on earth and….let it begin with me. No more violence!

  5. Carol L. Ries, SNJM

    I too hope and pray that leaders and followers of all faiths follow the lead of Pax Christi, USA, and call for prayer and a non-violent response to the tragic situation in Syria. May our own USCCB, clergy, religious communities of women and men do the same.

  6. Charlie Sears

    Thank you for articulating a viable non-violent solution to the conflict in Syrya. The pending US threats of violent intervention are so reminiscent of the beginnings of the Iraq conclict that one wonders how our government can again act so irresponsibly.

  7. I pray for a nonviolent resolution! Thank you for the well written letter
    which offers an alternative to war. Pope Francis has become such an
    advocate for the poor and marginalized. Possibly his words will add more strength to the plea.

  8. Nancy Walker

    Russia and China have repeatedly asked for dialogue rather than military intervention. This blood will be on our hands. Please let’s try to stop this insanity.

  9. Violence leads to more violence. Those unarmed, women, children, older people, those will be killed and injured. They will suffer the most. Dialogue is the only way to resolve this war, but most sides have to talk. I have my doubts that the Syrian leader will engage in this most needed dialogue. This has been going on too long. I pray he will come to his senses.

  10. Richard Krejsa

    President Obama made a tactical mistake in drawing a “red line” and now he feels he must follow through with some kind of military action to show Syria that he is serious and America is strong. How much better it would be for the world if he would admit his mistake in judgement and then, instead, adopt the Pax Christi statement. I pray for this option. Unfortunately, I fear that the President will go ahead with his intended “strike” (perhaps on Saturday after the UN Inspection team leaves).

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