Bassam Alahmad

Assessing Civil Society’s Role in Democratic Transitions

Mr. Bassam Alahmad is the co-founder and executive director of Syrians for Truth and Justice (STJ), a nongovernmental organization founded in 2016, and based in Strasbourg, France, which takes an inclusive approach to documenting human rights violations across Syria and trains activists on human rights data collection, data verification, and civic engagement strategies. A respected human rights defender, Mr. Alahmad previously worked for the Violations Documentations Center (VDC), documenting crimes and human rights violations in Syria, until the Damascus-based organization was forcibly closed, with its members jailed or forced into exile. He has consulted for various international human rights organizations and Syrian media outlets, worked as a human rights trainer, and authored several reports. In 2015, he participated in the U.S. Department of State’s Leaders for Democracy Fellowship at Syracuse University. During his fellowship at NED, Mr. Alahmad is examining the role of civil society, particularly human rights organizations, in transitions to democracy. Based on his findings, he plans to author a report proposing best practices for Syrian civil society to consider in facilitating a democratic transition amidst an ongoing conflict.