• الحملات

Syria: Political activist held incommunicado

, رقم الوثيقة: MDE 24/034/2009

Yousef Dheeb al-Hmoud, a male Syrian political activist, is being held incommunicado at an unknown location. He is at risk of torture or other ill-treatment.

UA: 315/09 Index: MDE 24/034/2009 Syria Date: 25 November 2009
URGENT ACTION
POLITICAL ACTIVIST HELD INCOMMUNICADO
Yousef Dheeb al-Hmoud, a male Syrian political activist, is being held incommunicado at an
unknown location. He is at risk of torture or other ill-treatment.
Yousef Dheeb al-Hmoud, aged 44, was arrested from his home in the city of Deir az-Zawr, eastern Syria, by Syrian
security forces on 15 November. His family were unable to identify the security force that the arresting officers
belonged to.
The authorities have not provided information about where Yousef Dheeb al-Hmoud is being held, why he was
arrested or whether he will be charged. He had previously been summoned for questioning by Syrian security forces
on several occasions, most recently by Political Security earlier this month.
Yousef Dheeb al-Hmoud suffers from chronic kidney failure and associated high blood pressure, as well as gout in
one of his knees and feet, which causes him pain when walking. His condition requires regular medical supervision
and medication.
Yousef Dheeb al-Hmoud belongs to the Islamic Democratic Current, an Islamist political group which demands
democratic reform in Syria and is opposed to the use of violence. It is part of the Damascus Declaration for
Democratic National Change (DDDNC), an unauthorized umbrella body comprising opposition groups in Syria. He
has acted as a family conciliator at Deir az-Zawr’s Shari’a Court and worked as a teacher.
PLEASE WRITE IMMEDIATELY in Arabic, English, French or your own language:
Expressing concern that Yousef Dheeb al-Hmoud is being held incommunicado at an unknown location, putting
him at particular risk of torture or other ill-treatment;
calling on the authorities to ensure that he will not be tortured or otherwise ill-treated, and reminding them that
Syria is a state party to the UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or
Punishment;
urging the authorities to immediately allow him visits from his family, a lawyer of his choosing, and any
appropriate medical treatment he may require;
calling on the authorities to release Yousef Dheeb al-Hmoud unless he is to be charged with a recognizably
criminal offence and tried promptly in proceedings which meet fair trial standards.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS BEFORE 6 JANUARY 2010 TO:
President
Bashar al-Assad
Presidential Palace
al-Rashid Street
Damascus
Syrian Arab Republic
Fax: +963 11 332 3410
Salutation: Your Excellency
Minister of Interior
Major Sa’id Mohamed Samour
Ministry of Interior
‘Abd al-Rahman Shahbandar Street
Damascus
Syrian Arab Republic
Fax: +963 11 222 3428
Salutation: Your Excellency
And copies to:
Minister of Foreign Affairs
Walid al-Mu’allim
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
al-Rashid Street
Damascus
Syrian Arab Republic
Fax: +963 11 332 7620
Salutation: Your Excellency
Also send copies to diplomatic representatives accredited to your country. Please check with your section office if sending appeals after the above
date.
Date: 25 November 2009
URGENT ACTION
POLITICAL ACTIVIST HELD INCOMMUNICADO
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
There are widespread reports of torture and other ill-treatment in Syria’s detention and interrogation centers. People
suspected of affiliation to unauthorized Islamist groups are at particular risk of arbitrary detention, torture or other
ill-treatment. Syrian security force personnel generally benefit from impunity for such violations.
In August 2008, scores of individuals were arrested, mostly in Deir az-Zawr, but also in the cities of Aleppo and
Hama. One of those arrested, Mohammed Amin al-Shawa, died in custody in January 2009; according to Syrian
human rights organizations, he died as a result of being tortured. At least nine others remain in incommunicado
detention at an unknown location. According to Syrian human rights organizations, many appear to have been
arrested because the authorities interpreted their appearance and lifestyle as indications of their affiliation to
unauthorized Islamist groups.
Freedom of expression and association is strictly controlled in Syria, aided by “state of emergency” laws which have
been in force since 1964. Only the Ba’ath Party and some parties linked to it are officially recognized as political
parties in Syria and human rights organizations are not authorized to operate. Peaceful critics of the Syrian
authorities, members of human rights organizations and others suspected of being political opponents risk arrest,
harassment and persecution. One such case that is of 12 individuals serving two-and-a-half-year prison sentences
for their involvement in the DDDNC. The 12 were convicted by the Damascus Criminal Court on 29 October 2008 of
“weakening national sentiment” and “broadcasting false or exaggerated news which could affect the morale of the
country”. They were all arrested between 9 December 2007 and 5 February 2008 and initially held incommunicado
at the State Security Branch in Damascus, where at least eight of them were beaten. They were punched in the face,
kicked and slapped and were forced to sign false “confessions”. Amnesty International considers all of them to be
prisoners of conscience and calls for their immediate and unconditional release. Like Yousef Dheeb al-Hmoud, two
of the 12, Dr Yasser al-‘Eiti and Ahmad To’meh, belong to the Islamic Democratic Current.
UA: 315/09 Index: MDE 24/034/2009 Issue Date: 25 November 2009

اختر لغة لاستعراض التقرير