Tag Archives: Syria

Syria: 25 killed in Syria courthouse blast

March 15, 2017


A suicide bomber attacked a courthouse in the centre of the Syrian capital on Wednesday, killing at least 25 people and wounding others, state media reported.

“The preliminary toll in the terrorist suicide bombing at the old palace of justice building is 25 dead and a number of wounded,” state news agency SANA reported, citing a Damascus police source.

An AFP correspondent at the scene in the Hamidiyeh neighbourhood said security forces had cordoned off the area and roads leading to it were blocked as ambulances and firefighters rushed to the building.

The courthouse contains both an Islamic religious tribunal charged with personal matters, and a criminal court.

“We were terrified because the sound of the explosion was enormous,” a lawyer in the building during the attack told AFP.

“We took refuge in the library which is on a higher floor,” the lawyer added, speaking on condition of anonymity.

“It was a bloody scene.”

A local prosecutor told state television: “The terrorist targeted civilians… during a crowded period.

“The suicide bomber tried to enter and when police tried to prevent him, he rushed inside and blew himself up,” the prosecutor added.




http://fr.euronews.com/2017/03/15/double-attentat-suicide-a-damas-au-sixieme-anniversaire-de-la-guerre (FRANCAIS)

Syria: Razan Zaitouneh missing for three years

December 9, 2016


Since human rights lawyer Razan Zaitouneh, her husband and two colleagues were abducted on 9 December 2013, no one has heard of them. Today, exactly three years after their disappearance, fifty-six organizations, L4L amongst them, called for their immediate release.

Razan Zeitouneh, Wa’el Hamada, Samira Khalil, and Nazem Hammadi disappeared in Douma, after group of armed men stormed into the office of the Violations Documentation Center (VDC) on 9 December 2013.

Razan Zaitouneh has been one of the key lawyers defending political prisoners in Syria since 2001. Since the beginning of the crisis in 2011, Razan Zaitouneh has played a key role in efforts to defend human rights for all and protect independent groups and activists in Syria. Razan Zeitouneh is co-founder of the Local Coordination Committees in Syria (LCC) and the Violations Documentation Center (VDC), which documents human rights violations in Syria. As a result of her work, she had been threatened by both the Syrian government and armed opposition groups in Douma several months before her abduction.




http://www.idhae.org/observatoire-fr-page4.1.syr161010.htm (FRANCAIS)

http://www.gc4hr.org/news/view/1446 (ARABIC)

Syria: Assyrian Lawyer Detained By Kurds in Syria

November 17, 2016

Assyrian lawyer Riyad Lahdo Ado from al-Malikiyah in Syria’s northeast Hasakeh province was kept in Kurdish custody for 24 hours before he was released on Tuesday November 15.

The reason for the interrogation and interrogation is because an old land dispute with two Kurdish lawyers, where he had been successful in Syrian courts, according to Assyria TV.

The intelligence branch of the self proclaimed Kurdish PYD authority, titled Fer’ al-ma’lumat al-amni (Security Information Branch), called Mr. Ado to its headquarters in the oil rich town of Rmelan last Monday, where he immediately was arrested and interrogated, the Assyria TV report claimed.

He was only released on Tuesday afternoon because of heavy pressure from the local Assyrian community.

Ado told Assyria TV that this was a Kurdish power demonstration and abuse of rule.


Syria: uman Rights Organizations Renew Calls for Release of Lawyer Khalil Ma’touq | Joint Letter

October 4, 2016

Syria should immediately release the Human Rights LawyerKhalil Ma’touq and his assistant, Mohamed Thatha, 31 human rights organizations said today, on the fourth anniversary of their enforced disappearance.

On October 2, 2012, the two men are believed to have been arrested at a government-operated checkpoint on their way from Ma’touq’s home in the Damascus suburb of Sahnaya to his office in Damascus. Despite repeated requests for information to the public prosecutor’s office in Damascus in 2012 and 2013 by family and colleagues, Syrian authorities have denied that they arrested the men.

Despite these denials, individuals released from the government’s custody in 2015 have informed Ma’touq’s family that while in detention they spotted him in various government-operated detention facilities, including State Security Branch 285 and Military Intelligence Branch 235 in Damascus. Since then, the family has not received any information on his whereabouts.

Detention centers operated by the Syrian government’s security forces are appalling, with rampant torture and inhumane conditions, in which many thousands of detainees have died since 2011. Former detainees at Branch 235, where Ma’touq was reported to have been seen in 2015, said that they were held in poor conditions in crowded cells with inadequate access to food, water and hygienic facilities. One detainee, who cannot be identified for security reasons, told that approximately five men from his cell died each day as a consequence of torture or disease.

The organizations expressed grave concern that being held in such conditions may place Ma’touq’s life at risk. Ma’touq suffers from advanced lung disease, for which he requires appropriate medication and medical care, but which it is feared he has not received according to some local reports.

Syria: Human Rights Organizations Renew Calls for Release of Lawyer Khalil Ma’touq | Joint Letter



https://www.fidh.org/fr/themes/defenseurs-des-droits-humains/syrie-appel-a-la-liberation-immediate-de-l-avocat-des-droits-de-l (FRANCAIS)

Syria: Call for release of ‘Douma Four’ on birthday of Razan Zaitouneh

April 29, 2016


To mark the birthday of missing human rights lawyer Razan Zaitouneh, today a large amount of organizations, including L4L,called for her immediate release, as well as that of her colleagues Samira Khalil, Nazem Hamadi and Wa’el Hamada. The four, also known as the ‘Douma Four’, were abducted on 9 December 2013 in Douma. Since then, no one has heard of them.

Razan Zeitouneh is a lawyer who mostly represented political prisoners, and won several awards for her human rights work. She is, even though she had to go into hiding due to threats in 2011, one of the few internationally known human rights lawyers who have remained in Syria since the uprising in March 2011.

Razan Zeitouneh is co-founder of the Local Coordination Committees in Syria (LCC) and the Violations Documentation Center (VDC), which documents all human rights violations in Syria. Furthermore, she is co-founder of the ‘local development and small projects support office’ (LDSPS), which provices basic needs and essential services and support to medical and development centres in Syria.

Syria Call for release of ‘Douma Four’ on birthday of Razan Zaitouneh

Syria: Joint Appeal to Help Free Syrian Human Rights Defender Razan Zaitouneh and Her Colleagues on Her Birthday | Letter



Syria: “Their freedom is their right” campaign announces Razan Zaitouneh as the prisoner of the month in February

February 10, 2016

“Their freedom is their right” (“#حريتهم_حقهم”) is a campaign for defending the rights of prisoners of conscience launched by Maharat Foundation and the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) initiated on 04 May 2014. The campaign was also joined by the Gulf Centre for Human Rights (GCHR), in addition to the members of the Arab Group in the IFEX network, who nominated Syrian human rights defender Razan Zaitouneh to be the campaign’s prisoner of the month during February 2016. See: http://bit.ly/1NZAv74

Razan Zaitouneh was born in 1977. She has been one of the most prominent lawyers and human rights activists defending political prisoners in Syria since 2001. She has played a key role in efforts to defend human rights for all people and protect independent groups and Syrian activists. Along with a number of other activists, Zaitouneh established the Violations Documentation Center (VDC) in Syria, and co-founded in April 2011 the Local Coordination Committees (LCCs), which co-ordinate the work of local committees in various cities and towns across Syria. She also established the Local Development and Small Projects Support Office, which assists non-governmental organizations in Eastern Ghouta, near Damascus.

At the beginning of the Syrian uprising, Zaitouneh was forced into hiding owing to her media activism, so as to convey the truth about what was happening on the ground to the various media outlets, especially the violations (detention, torture, killing, and harassment) committed against citizens.



Syria: Public Statement – The Law Society of Upper Canada expresses grave concerns about the abduction of human rights lawyer Razan Zaitouneh in Syria

January 29, 2016

The Law Society of Upper Canada expresses grave concerns about the abduction of human rights lawyer Razan Zaitouneh in Syria.

Razan Zaitouneh is a prominent human rights lawyer who has won several awards for her human rights work, including the 2013 International Women of Courage Award and the 2011 Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought. She largely defends political prisoners. Razan Zaitouneh is a co-founder of both the Violations Documentation Centre (VDC) and the Local Development and Small Projects Support (LDSPS).

On 9 December 2013, Razan Zaitouneh, along with her husband, Wa’el Hamada, and two colleagues, Nazem Hamadi and Samira Khalil, were abducted by unknown individuals from a joint office of the VDC and the LDSPS in the Damascus suburb of Douma. In the months prior to her abduction, Razan Zaitouneh had received threats from at least one armed opposition group in Eastern Ghouta. Reports indicate that the abduction of Razan Zaitouneh and her colleagues is linked to their human rights work.