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GCAP has joined with more than 110 other civil society networks and organisations to call for a peaceful resolution to the violence in Syria.

Three years after a brutal crackdown and civil war have forced 9 million Syrians - some 40% of the country's population - from their homes and killed at least 100,000 more, civil society activists across the globe held #withSyria peace vigils to show their support for the Syrian people.

From Za'atari - the largest Syrian refugee camp in Jordan - to New York, Khartoum, Hong Kong, Nairobi, Melbourne and London's Trafalgar Square, people lit candles, uploaded photos and released red balloons, a symbol of 'There is Always Hope' popularised by the British graffiti artist, Banksy.

A number of GCAP constituents - including ANND (the Arab NGO Network for Development) and Allianza por la Solidaridad (GCAP Spain) - also joined the campaign.

Organisers and participants of #withSyria have three main messages for the Syrian combatants, their supporters and world leaders:

1. Stop the bloodshed

End all attacks on civilians, including schools and hospitals, and respect the rights of people affected by the conflict.

2. Ensure access to life-saving assistance to all who need it

End sieges, agree to humanitarian pauses, remove obstructions to civilians seeking aid and end all attacks on aid workers. International donors must also provide sufficient funds for the aid response in Syria and the region.

3. Commit to inclusive peace talks and ensure that the voices of those affected - including women and civil society - are heard and heeded.

"We must support a political solution," says GCAP co-chair Marta Benavides, "no intervention and no more bloodshed."

"It is vital that civil society be far more vocal on a crisis of such tragic proportion for so many," adds GCAP Global Council member Stephen Hale, who is also the Deputy Advocacy and Campaigns Director for Oxfam International.


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