Justice to Transcend Conflict

Syrian Centre for Policy Research (SCPR)

The report "Justice to Transcend Conflict. Impact of Syrian Conflict Report 2016-2019" is part of a series of reports that provide multidimensional analyses of impacts of the armed conflict in Syria during the period 2011-2019, examining the socioeconomic situation and institutional performance of the country during this time1. This report diagnoses the conflict based on an innovative Human Status Framework that assesses the interlinkages between institutional, social, and economic factors on macro, meso, and local levels. The report also frames the conflict through a social justice lens, and provides alternatives based on expert-developed participatory approaches.2

Key results and messages of this report are as follows:


For the purpose of this report, ‘justice’ is defined as equitable rights and entitlements of citizens that assures fair political, social, and economic capabilities, opportunities and outcomes as perceived by the society. It implies distributional and procedural equities that avoid and/or recover socially produced differences between and within populations groups.

This report adopts a practical approach to countering injustice through dynamic corrections of what are perceived as unfair constraints or outcomes by society. It emphasizes the organic interrelations between justice, freedom, and solidarity as core values that work together to maintain peace and welfare.

The aggravation of injustice is a root cause of the Syrian conflict, as are political exclusion and violations of civil rights; a lack of accountability and the use of force have eroded citizens’ voice and representation. The continuation of ‘institutional suffocation’ which SCPR defines as the divergence between the society and ruling institutions without available means to mitigate the gap, compounded into injustice for Syrians. The neoliberal policies and economic ‘reforms’ created jobless and anti-poor economic growth in the first decade of the new millennium, which aggravated vertical and horizontal inequalities. This was associated with shrinking the public space and a lack of social policies that promote social relations and trust.

Throughout the conflict, human rights abuses, de-development and deterioration in factors in positive human status have created a cycle of injustice and conflict. The transformation of the social movement to address the injustice devolved into a severe armed conflict shifted the grievances to catastrophic levels.

The conflict has created three types of injustices: the retroactive injustice which refers to the destruction and deterioration of the tangible and intangible wealth of the country that have accumulated through centuries; the current injustice, which represents the production of injustice now, as the conflict shifted the integrated and productive economic and social activities towards the destructive one; and future injustice, as the subjugating powers institutionalizing conflict-centered institutions, relations, and economy. These powers continue building the foundations of injustice in the future adding to be added to the grievances that were created during the conflict.

The report used a composite index to assess the impact of the conflict “Human Status Index” (HuDI) that consists of five main dimensions that measure demographic, economic, human development, social and institutional performance. Syria’s HuDI deteriorated by 42 per cent between 2010 and 2019, across all sub-indices and leading by the collapse of the institutional performance which dropped by 67 per cent. The extent of deterioration in the HuDI varies across time, regions and communities, and has been driven by violence, insecurity, the policies of dominating actors, conflict economy, social degradation and external interventions among other factors.

Economic injustice

The conflict had led to the emergence of different, fragmented economies within the fractured state.

The varied system of incentives across these new economies demonstrated that one of the few common interests among the rival powers was the abuse of economic resources for the benefit of new conflict elite, and at the expense of productive economic activities.

The economic foundations were transformed into a self-sustaining cycle of violence in which much of the capital stock was destroyed or reallocated to conflict-related activities. Many workers lost their jobs and a substantial part of the remaining job opportunities served the conflict. Economic institutions changed their policies and rules to support the new conflict actors or be allowed to continue to operate.

In 2016, the economy contracted severely by 14.1 per cent, as the conflict intensified on many fronts and as economic policies continued to increase the prices of oil derivatives. In 2017, the relative improvements in security conditions of some regions, especially with the de-escalation zones agreement, led to growth of GDP by almost 3.3 per cent, however, it contracted again in 2018 by 1.9 per cent. 2019 witnessed a positive growth rate by 7.9 per cent due to the reduction in the frequency and scale of battles and substantial growth in the agriculture sector.

Total accumulated economic loss during the conflict by the end of 2019 is projected to reach 530.1 billion USD, compared to the counterfactual scenario, which is equivalent to 9.7 times of GDP of 2010 at constant prices. The total loss consists of GDP loss equal to 420.9 billion USD, the increase in military expenditure is equal to 37.8 billion USD, the capital stock damaged or lost which is equal 64.6 billion USD, and the informal production of the oil and gas is projected to reach 9.9 billion USD by the end of 2019.

During the period 2011-2019, public expenditure dropped substantially from 28.9 per cent of GDP in 2011 to 17.6 per cent in 2015 and 13.3 per cent in 2019. Current expenditure fell from 21.6 per cent of GDP in 2011 to 15.3 and 10.5 per cent in 2015 and 2019 respectively.

Public subsidies have witnessed a consistent decrease as a percentage of the current GDP from 20.2 per cent in 2011 to 13.1 per cent in 2014. Due to the price liberalization, the subsidies dropped sharply to 5.1 per cent in 2015 and 4.9 per cent in 2019. As a result, the public budget deficit with off-budget subsidies dropped from 23.6 per cent in 2013 to 8.8 per cent in 2019.

Revenue as a share of GDP dropped substantially from 25.4 per cent of GDP in 2011 to 10.3 per cent in 2015 and to 7.4 per cent in 2019. The substantial drop in the revenue during the conflict was associated with major changes of the structure of revenue. The non-oil indirect taxes share of total revenue increased from 14 per cent in 2011 to 38 per cent in 2019, while the non-oil direct taxes share decreased from 16 per cent in 2011 to 13 per cent in 2019.

Fiscal policies funded the enormous deficit through foreign and domestic public debt which creates a substantial burden for future generations. The total public debt increased from 30 per cent of GDP in 2010 to 208 per cent in 2019. This is especially egregious given that it has been used mainly to fund armed conflict and conflict economy.

The currency witnessed another wave of depreciation by 43 per cent in September 2019 compared to July 2018. This is a substantial deprecation, despite the fact that the period 2018-2019 saw an expansion in government- controlled areas and relative stability in many regions in addition to exceptionally good agriculture season and slow recovery in the manufacturing sector. The period October 2019 - January 2020 witnessed an acceleration of depreciation to reach 96 per cent on 16 January 2020 compared to 17 October 2019.

The report highlights key factors for this deterioration including the dominance of conflict-centered institutions and the dynamics of conflict economies. The conflict has damaged the foundations of the economy and caused weak performance of public institutions and a reduction of external support, compounded recently by United States’ sanctions and the economic crisis in Lebanon.

By the end of 2018, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) was increasing by 0.4 per cent compared to 2017. However, in 2019 the inflation rate surged to 33 per cent; the increased occurred mainly in the third and fourth quarters. The CPI during the nine years increased 18-fold between February 2011 and December 2019, which severely deteriorated the real income of households and increase poverty.
Total employment decreased sharply during the conflict from 5.184 million in 2011 to 2.568 million in 2016 and increased gradually to 3.058 million in 2019. The unemployment rate increased from 14.9 per cent in 2011 to 51.8 per cent in 2016 and decreased gradually to 42.3 per cent. Utilizing counterfactual scenarios, the labor market lost 3.7 million jobs. The huge loss of job opportunities surged the economic dependency ratio from 4.13 persons per employee in the year 2010 to 6.4 persons in the year 2019.

Social injustice

The population inside Syria declined by 2.3, 2.9, and 1.9 per cent in 2015, 2016 and 2017 respectively. Then it increased by 0.9 and 1.1 per cent in 2018 and 2019 respectively to reach 19.584 million in 2019. The conflict has changed the demographics of the population as the result of various factors including the increased number of male deaths compared with female; age- specific death rates and changes in fertility and the impacts of displacement and migration.

Nine years of the conflict caused more than 5.6 million people to flee to seek safety in Lebanon, Turkey, Jordan, and other hosting countries. By August 2019, the number of internally displaced people had reached 6.14 million (UNHCR, 2019)3  which is the world’s largest number of internally displaced people (IDPs) due to conflict. In addition, 202,000 escaped the country in October 2019 due to the ‘Naba Al-Salam’ (Peace Spring) military operation in the north-eastern region of Syria. In early 2020, intense military operations in Idleb and west Aleppo displace hundreds of thousands towards northern Idleb and Aleppo.

Refugees experience multiple forms of injustice which can be categorized into three dimensions: entry and movement; human development; status, voice, and representation. Though these three are interconnected and overlapping, examining each allows for understanding the numerous and increasing deprivations which refugees suffer.

The Human Development Index (HDI) dropped from 0.631 in 2010 to 0.431 in 2016 with a minor increase in 2017-2019 to reach 0.445 in 2019 due to the increase in life expectancy and an increase of income. In 2019, Syria was one of the worst ten countries in the world in terms of HDI performance.

The HDI results indicate the extent to which Syria has deviated from its development path and has highlighted the collapse of crucial social structures necessary for empowerment. As a result, people have been denied access to food, health, and education services. These indicators show the expanding inequality in Syria relative to the rest of the world.

The Syrian population continues to lose millions of years of schooling as the children (5-17) who are out of school in 2019 number 2.4 million.

The current outcome is still disastrous as those millions of children will suffer from a lack of skills and knowledge in addition to the impact of the conflict. The conflict created a lack of curriculum consistency across Syria, with different education systems established in different regions depending on the ruling power. The 2018 Humanitarian Needs Overview highlighted six different curricula being used in schools in Syria.

The direct loss of basic education years is estimated at 1.47 million years in 2019. The overall loss in basic education until 2019 reached 25.5 million schooling years compared to the counterfactual scenario. Meanwhile, the overall loss in the years of schooling for all educational levels has reached about 46.0 million years between 2011 and 2019, and the estimated cost of this loss is estimated at USD 34.6 billion.

The fragmentation across the country and the rapid emergence of different fighting parties resulted in the creation of weak governed institutions highly dependent on violence.

These crippled institutions negatively affected the overall health system; including hampering access to services and medications; perpetuating pervasive discrimination; weakening healthcare capacity; causing the destruction of health infrastructure, including the targeting of hospitals and Health Care Workers (HCWs); and triggering the collapse of the pharmaceutical industry.

This report identifies collective punishment as a core tactic created during the conflict which inflicted stricter punishments on certain groups, communities, and regions. The report reveals that areas outside of governmental control have suffered the greatest burden of health status destruction.

The increase in mortality among different population groups is one of the most catastrophic impacts of the conflict. Our data reveal a rise in the crude death rate from 4.4 per thousand in 2010 to 10.9 per thousand in 2014. The projections for 2016-2019 reflect a consistent decline, with crude death rates reduced to 9.9 per thousand in 2017 and 7.0 per thousand in 2019.

The morbidity in terms of communicable and non-communicable diseases, such as poliovirus, measles, influenza-like illness, acute diarrhea, typhoid, leishmaniasis, disability, and trauma have all surged.

The overall poverty rate reached its peak at 89.4 per cent by the end of 2016, dropped in 2019 to 86 per cent due to positive economic growth, yet the last quarter of 2019 witnessed a surge in the prices that increased the poverty rates. The average overall poverty line for a household equals on average SYP 280 thousand per month at the end of 2019.

Abject poverty as a proxy for food deprivation was less than 1 per cent in Syria 2010; during the conflict, Syria witnessed widespread abject poverty reaching 44.9 per cent in 2016. The increase in food prices in different regions deteriorated the ability of people to consume enough calories. This reality is also associated with the dependency of the Syrian people, who must seek support from everywhere to meet their basic needs.

The Food Security Index declined sharply by about 34 per cent between 2010 and 2014, while in 2018 the index decreased by about 8 per cent compared to 2014. The Access to Food Index improved slightly by about 3 per cent due to the decrease in siege areas and the military operations, but the availability, stability and utilization indexes decreased by 20 per cent, 14 per cent and 1 per cent respectively.

The Social Capital Index dropped by 43 percent during 2010-2019; with subjugating powers continuing their use of violence and fear to subordinate people. Identity politics were one of the main policies used to fuel the conflict by abusing the diversity of religions, ethnicities, economic and social backgrounds, bonding relations, regions to create fragmentation and polarization that are needed to “eliminate and dehumanize the other”. This deterioration of social capital reflected a substantial aggravation of social injustice as it deteriorated the wealth of social relations and common values and harmed social solidarity and people’s capabilities and agency.

Women are among the main victims of the conflict in Syria. They faced severe violations including killing, detention, kidnapping, sexual violence, labor in harsh conditions and increased economic responsibility – especially in the case of displaced families or widows. Women have also been affected by more frequent incidents of underage marriage, customary marriage, trafficking, and other forms of exploitation. They also suffered from political, social, and economic exclusion.

Children witnessed three types of violations during the conflict. The first is ‘serious violations’ represents the conflict environment that ruined children’s lives, such as the conflict economy, including child labor; food insecurity reaching starvation levels; forced displacement including family separations or missing family members; poverty; poor living conditions; lack of access to health and education services; and social degradation. Second is ‘grave violations’ which represent the exposure of the children to kidnapping, detention, forced recruitment, and besieging. The third is ‘extreme grave violations,’ representing the exposure of the children of Syria to direct loss of their right to life as many of them killed or injured by during the conflict.

Environmental degradation was one of an aspect of injustice during the conflict as the quantity and quality of weapons used in the conflict poses a serious environmental threat to arable land, as toxic substances have caused soil contamination, which adversely affects the quality of agricultural land and its cultivability or productivity. The conflict has led to the waste of many natural resources such as forests and water resources as a result of destruction, vandalism or misuse, such as logging for heating or drilling of artesian wells in unsustainable ways. Waste and pollution factors affect the long-term potential of environmental sustainability and create Intergenerational future Injustice.

Institutional injustice

The Human Status Index showed the enormous collapse in institutional performance and the deadly struggle between fighting political actors. Throughout the conflict, decision- making processes have been fragmented and internationalized, as multiple internal and external actors engaged in setting contradicting priorities and mechanisms for each of the involved actors. The different forms of institutions were conflict- centered and adopted extreme strategies to detrimentally affect human beings, social relations, and resources, as well as to subordinate communities.

Although the intensity of battles has declined during 2017-2019, the rule of law, participation, accountability aspects of governance continued to deteriorate.

There are major contradictions between the five internal actors including civil society. The priorities of justice, freedom, transparency, participatory and democracy are at the bottom of the priority list for those in power, which reflects the nature of the conflict centered actors. Only civil society ranked justice, freedom, and democracy as top priorities. The priorities of external actors showed major contradictions as well. For example, for the United Nations, peace, freedom, justice, transparency and participatory are among the top priorities, while for Russia, legitimacy, country unity, sustainability and development are the top priorities.

The abuse of the judicial institutions was one of the government’s authoritarian characteristics before the conflict, with the absence of an independent legal system, and the aggravation of security services that had the upper hand in directing the legal system and other justice institutions. This led to the absence of any institutions that can resolve conflicts in a just manner, which has compounded enormous grievances.

The judicial authority in Syria witnessed a severe deterioration during the war, as the Government of Syria was a main party to the conflict and the legitimacy of the state institutions has sharply deteriorated. The Government of Syria used security services to exclude punish and subordinate any opposition voices. During the conflict the official legal system has experienced many distortions in terms of fragmentation of authority as the country divided to many areas with many different de facto actors, the hegemony of military forces created its “war law” regardless of the de jure Syrian legislation, and created of many informal channels to deal with people grievances, losses of human capital, lack of security and accessibility. The war-torn, discriminatory and fragmented judicial system(s) are missing the political will, legal reference, human and procedural capacities to handle the grave violations that have been used as a tool of war.

The conflict has contributed to the reconfiguration of Syrian civil society in complex and overlapping forms and functions. In 2011, the movement created new spaces and aspirations towards political, social and economic participation. The pathway to fulfill these aspirations was confronting despotism and freedom from fear that has afflicted public life in the country for decades. However, the adoption of the military and security confrontation of the movement, the blockage of horizon in opening spaces for reaching social congruences, and the increase in violations and losses have hindered the promising growth of civil society institutions and initiatives. In a second stage, with the serious deterioration of the armed conflict, the military and security forces succeeded in using repression, identity politics, and the conflict economies to disrupt social capital, which led to serious divisions in the structures of Syrian society.

The organic relations between political actors and new private elite have been deepened and transformed wealth (that which has not been destroyed) to their own benefits in an unprecedented forced redistribution of tangible and intangible capital. Therefore, enormous injustices were created between the political actors and the new private elite on one hand, and the surviving private sector, employees, unemployed, displaced, and poor people, among others.

International humanitarian agencies played a significant role in alleviating grievances and meeting the increased demands for livelihood support actions of Syrian civilians, Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), refugees and host communities (and states). Furthermore, international organizations operated in high demand, dire security contexts and managed to be present in hard-to-reach areas in the most intensely conflict-affected regions. However, these interventions have failed to bridge the gaps between needs and resources and suffered from polarization, lack of coordination, weak accountability, and most importantly, the dominance of insecurity and conflict-centered institutions. While the role of humanitarian agencies and civil society is significant and aims to mitigate the suffering, they do not have the capacity and space to fulfill the absence of social security.

The global governance system failed to protect civilians in Syria and to activate humanitarian international law and/or effectively enhance the prospect of a just and sustainable settlement. The case of Syria is not unique in the region; the people in this region suffered from injustices at the hands of the global system in Palestine, Iraq, Lebanon, Yemen, Libya, and others.

The application of international law during the Syrian conflict has been negligible, which has impeded the alleviation of civilian suffering and set the grounds for a prolonged conflict. The global power struggle has a direct effect on the intractability of the Syrian conflict. This struggle represented in the approaches of the permanent five members of the Security Council in addressing the Syrian war and the impacts thereof. The struggle is reflected in contradicted priorities and policies including political and military interventions, sanctions, and economic and humanitarian support, with substantial involvement of conflicting regional actors.

Justice to transcend conflict

This report suggests the Human Status Framework as a comprehensive, evidence-based approach to analyze the impact and dynamics of the conflict from the justice lens. The institutional, social, and economic diagnoses of the conflict identify injustice as a core root of the conflict, and perpetuation and creation of new and existing injustice as a key outcome of the conflict. This framework and analysis can contribute to forming a widely accepted narrative for the conflict, and then creating alternative pathways for the transcending of the intractable conflict through addressing the injustice as a main foundation to create sustainable peace.

The report suggests alternative approaches to start the transcending process of conflict, based on the political economy analysis of the key active powers and dynamics of the conflict.

  • Social congruences in participatory approach: The political economy of peace- oriented institutions
  • Dismantling conflict economy
  • The Nodes Overlapping Development
  • Strategy
  • Justice to children


The incidence and severity of poverty in Syria are estimated using the national poverty lines across governorates. The projections used in this report are based on the Household Income and Expenditure Surveys (HIES), through a micro-simulation technique based on SCPR estimations of private consumption per capita and the CPI per governorates during 2010-2019. These projections are slightly different from the previous reports as this poverty estimation does not use the counterfactual (if the conflict had not occurred) methodology.

Before the conflict, although the average poverty incidence was not extremely high, the overall poverty rate in Syria increased between 2004 and 2009 as real per capita expenditure declined annually by 2 per cent. However, the GDP grew during the same period on average by 4.4 per cent. This was clear evidence that the growth was not pro-poor and the economic ‘reform’ policies negatively the vulnerable people of Syria. Furthermore, the country witnessed high disparities in terms of poverty across governorates and urban/rural areas, which reflected the imbalance of the development strategy.

During the conflict Syrians have suffered unprecedented levels of poverty and deprivation. The contraction of the GDP per capita continued except in 2019 (as discussed in the economic section), and conflict continues across the country causing more death and destruction. The conflict economy aggravated the suffering of people by using sources of income and access to basic goods and services as a tool of war.

A ‘conflict elite’ began to emerge and flourish at the expense of the majority of Syrians and expanded the inequalities in both capabilities and opportunities.

The loss of jobs and wealth was compounded by an increase in cost of living, the decline of financial or physical accessibility to basic goods and services, and the deterioration of formal and informal social security mechanisms. Civil society and humanitarian agencies attempted to reduce the severity of the social insecurity; however, this was extremely difficult given that targeting people, wealth, social relations, social services, and solidarity were all explicit tactics used in the conflict.

Since 2014, government economic policies adapted more neoliberal policies, through a dramatic increase of prices of bread and other basic food items and oil derivatives in addition to the raising of fees and indirect taxes. These policies continued in 2015 and 2016 and to a less extent in 2017. By the end of 2019, most Syrians had become trapped in poverty, suffering from multidimensional deprivation, not only just money metric deprivation.

Given the contraction of the economy across the governorates, assuming no change in expenditure distribution, and taking into consideration the change in structure of the prices between governorates compared to 2009, it is estimated that the overall poverty rate reached its peak at 89.4 per cent by the end of 2016. The poverty rate slightly dropped in 2019 to 86 per cent due to positive economic growth, yet the last quarter of 2019 witnessed a surge in the prices that again increased the poverty rates. The average overall poverty line for a household equals on average SYP 280,000 per month at the end of 2019. At the regional level, the governorates which suffered intensive conflict, already has historically higher historical rates of poverty, and continue to suffer the most from poverty. Overall, all governorates had 77 per cent or higher rates of poverty (Figure 60).

The challenge of living in poverty for a long time is not only related to poverty incidence, as the poverty gap (the relative difference between average expenditure of poor people and the poverty line) increased substantially. In the case of overall poverty, the poverty gap increased from 4 per cent in 2010 to 14.5 percent 2012 and it reached its peak at 44.5 per cent in 2016. This dropped slightly to 40 per cent in 2019, which means that the average expenditure of poor people in 2019 is less two-third of the overall poverty line.

Extreme poverty is defined by using the lower national poverty line. It is estimated that 71 per cent of the population was living in extreme poverty by the end of 2019 compared to 75 per cent in 2018, and 77 per cent in 2016. The estimated extreme poverty line per household per month on average equals SYP 203,000. The most affected by extreme poverty are unable to meet the very basic needs to survive (Figure 61).

Abject poverty as a proxy for deprivation of food was less than 1 per cent in Syria 2010; during the conflict the Syrians began to experience widespread abject poverty - in 2012 it reached 5.1 per cent, and then rose exponentially to 44.9 per cent 2016, and then reduced somewhat to 37 per cent in 2019 (Figure 62). The increase in food prices in different regions created extreme barriers for people to access enough food to meet recommended caloric intake amounts. The years 2016 to 2019 in particular were marked by serious and widespread deprivation. This is a process of de-humanizing and de-empowering of people that continues and will have a major impact on future generations.

The poverty of most Syrians and the length and severity of their deprivation is evidence of the catastrophic influence of the conflict.

The impacts of the collapse of real income and expenditure have not been homogenous across Syria; inequalities surged across regions, political affiliation, gender, age, displacement status, cultural identities, and socioeconomic backgrounds. The subjugating powers played direct roles in depriving the society and facilitating the creation of the conflict elite. Furthermore, the government withdrew subsidies from many basic goods, increased the cost on producers and consumers and aggravated poverty to add a burden to the conflict situations.

Another aspect of injustice is the dependency experienced by the Syrian people when having to seek support to meet their basic needs.

Humanitarian agencies and civil society have an enormous role to play in mitigating suffering and to provide support and services in ways that uphold the respect and dignity of their beneficiaries. However, these organizations do not have the capacity to entirely replace the vacuum left by the absence of social security.

Finally, the strategy to overcome chronic poverty in Syria needs to address the challenges of the conflict continuation and its foundations that have been increasingly rooted during the conflict years.


Throughout 2016-2019, subjugating powers in Syria have continued their use of violence and fear to subordinate the population, which in turn has entrenched a worsened degree of injustice in Syria. Identity politics has been one of the main policies fueling the conflict, through the abuse of the diversity in religions, ethnicities, economic and social backgrounds, relations and regions to create fragmentation and polarization that are needed to eliminate and dehumanize the other. The regional and international actors that are directly involved in the conflict have further aggravated the social fragmentation and inequality. Battles in Aleppo, Ar-Raqqa, Afrin, Ghouta, Hama, Idleb, Al-Hasakeh among many others were clear examples of using identity politics to escalate the war.

This report demonstrates that economic foundations have been transformed to self- sustained conflict economies in which the main capital stock was destroyed or reallocated to conflict-related activities, workers lost their jobs and a substantial part of the remaining job opportunities served the conflict. Economic institutions, including the market, have changed their policies and rules to support the new conflict actors. Injustice in Syria has become a system that includes inequality between people according to locations, gender, age, political affiliation, culture background, class, migration and hosting status.

The dimensions of human development witnessed catastrophic consequences in terms of demographic distortions, forced displacement, loss of human capital, deprivation of education, accumulation of health burden, politicizing public services, widespread of poverty of food insecurity, gender injustice, children’s rights violations and environmental degradations.

The deterioration of social capital reflected a significant aggravation of social injustice as it deteriorated the wealth of social relations and common values, harmed the social solidarity,  and undermined people’s capabilities and agency. Moreover, the conflict created distorted relations based on hate and rejection of others and perpetuated an environment of lack of sympathy, cooperation and trust. These distorted relations with huge grievances threaten the future of society to live in peace and integration. The damage of social capital was uneven across sex, class, regions, political affiliations, displacement statues among other aspects.

The conflict-centered institutions are a key producer of injustice during the conflict, creating power dynamics that subordinate Syrians now and in the future. The conflict governance systems interlink organically external and local subjugating powers and vanish the space of people and society.

This report addresses the centrality of justice to transcend conflict through alternative strategies that are built on the public discussion and social choice to achieve decent human status. These alternatives are part of wider gradual and multidimensional approaches that adopt small yet symbolic steps that reduces people’s grievances and establish foundations for future justice. These alternatives also falls within a long term vision focused on rebuilding institutions on the basis of justice, citizenship, democracy, the rule of law, inclusion, and accountability; to remove constraints on public liberties, and the production of knowledge; to solve urgent issues such as the catastrophe of detainees, kidnapped, forced disappeared persons, and the exploitation of women and children.


1 Previous reports [Socioeconomic Roots and Impact of the Syrian Crisis (Jan, 2013); Syrian Catastrophe (June, 2013); War on Development (Oct, 2013); Squandering Humanity (May, 2014); Alienation and Violence (March, 2015), Confronting Fragmentation (Feb, 2016)], are available in English and Arabic on SCPR website http://scpr-syria.org.

2 This national report includes the executive summary, poverty and conclusions chapters of the report which is available in English and Arabic. The pdf version of the English version of the report is available here.