17,000 could have been tortured to death in Al-Assad’s prisons

Wednesday, 05 February 2014

Some 17,000 Syrians held in Al-Assad’s prisons are feared dead as news of the torture of a further 11,000 detains also emerges, a Syrian human rights organization said.

The death of a Syrian dissident in prison raised concerns about the possibility of the deaths after a photo released by a former member of the regime revealed that around 11,000 prisoners were tortured to death while in the regime’s custody.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights confirmed the death of Wissam Sara, who is the son of the well-known Opposition figure Fayez Sara. Wissam, a father of two, was killed on Monday as a result of the torture he was subjected to inside the military prison in Damascus. The group expressed fears that the fate of more than 17,000 detainees, who are missing inside the regime’s prisons, could be the same as Wissam’s.

The opposition human rights group based in London called on the international community and the UN Envoy in Syria Al-Akhdar Al-Ibrahimi to pressure Al-Assad’s regime to release more than 100,000 detainees currently held in basements and prisons. It said it had already sent the names of 10,000 detainees to Al-Ibrahimi’s office.

In an Arabic statement obtained by CNN, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said it considered last month to be the worst in terms of the number of deaths since the beginning of the Syrian revolution on the March 18, 2011. The observatory documented 5,794 deaths that occurred in January alone.

The statement also pointed out that the number of civilian deaths in the first months of 2014 had reached 3,013 including 358 children, 225 women, in addition to the death of 1,281 opposition fighters. The number of unidentified victims reached 30, in addition to another 14 deaths from the regime’s dissidents.

They said the number of deaths of fighters from the Islamic Brigades, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) and Al-Nusra Front has reached 1,251 deaths, adding that most of the dead don’t hold Syrian nationality and some of them are unknown.

As for the regime’s troops, the number of deaths reached 923, in addition to 502 deaths from the “people’s committees”, the National Defense Force, Shabiha and informants loyal to the regime. There were also deaths from Hezbollah and 52 among non-Syrian and Shia fighters who are loyal to Al-Assad’s regime.

Source: Middle East Monitor.

Link: https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/news/middle-east/9592-17000-could-have-been-tortured-to-death-in-al-assads-prisons.

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