Female Aramean Christian in Syria Constitutional Committee – one of the five proposed WCA candidates has been selected by the UN

WCA-NGO – 26/10/2019

Ms. Hala Naoum Néhmé is one of the candidates proposed by WCA who has been selected by the United Nations to be part of the Syria Constitutional Committee. Its 150 members, who are scheduled to meet in Geneva on 30 October, will draft a new constitution for Syria. The WCA representative lives in the Netherlands but originates from Aleppo.

Next week, 150 Syrians are expected in Geneva for the opening session of the long-awaited Committee under the auspices of Mr. Geir Pedersen, the UN Special Envoy for Syria. In the framework of the political process, provided for under Security Council Resolution 2254 (2015), they will redraft the Syrian constitution. The Committee consists of 50 individuals each from the Syrian government, the opposition, and civil society. The UN completed the civil society list, including people from a range of political, geographic and ethnoreligious backgrounds.

Ms. Naoum Néhmé will join the independent voice of civil society. The WCA representative is a city councilor of Amsterdam for the ruling liberal party, the People’s Party for Freedom (VVD), and a senior economist at the Dutch Ministry of Finance. Regarding her position, she remarked: “I am grateful for this chance to help contribute to the perfection of the law. Syria has a beautiful ethnoreligious mosaic that needs to be cherished. One of my aims is to enshrine equal rights for all citizens, irrespective of their backgrounds, in the new constitution of my birth country. In particular for the ethnoreligious minorities such as the vulnerable Arameans.”

The election of Ms. Naoum Néhmé to the Committee is the result of WCA’s continuous dialogue with the UN Special Envoys to Syria. In recent years, WCA kept requesting them to include the indigenous Arameans, who have greatly contributed to Syria’s ancient and modern history. Particularly through their spoken and written Aramaic language, which is endangered today.

“Our people are very excited about this historic achievement,” stated the WCA President, Mr. Johny Messo. “We are duly thankful to the UN and the states involved in the Syrian peace process for granting our people a voice. This form of recognition is heartening. It also gives us renewed hope that we reached the end of the war in and against our ancestral homeland.”


Click here to download this statement (pdf).