74 People Killed Under Torture in Assad’s Prisons in February

The Syrian Network for Human Rights said it documented 74 detainees killed under torture in Assad’s prisons in February, citing 17 victims in Hama and 16 in Dara’a. The victims included three university students, two school teachers and a child.

Spokesperson for the Syrian Coalition Salem al-Meslet stresses that the file of detainees in Assad’s secret jails is a top priority for the Syrian Coalition, adding that “we have repeatedly raised the issue of the detainees in our meetings with Arab, regional and international officials and have called for exercising pressure on the Assad regime to release the detainees and alleviate their suffering.“

Last February, the UN human rights chief urged the Assad regime to release all activists, lawyers and other detainees that they have been holding without due process, including some jailed for years.

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al-Hussein estimated that between tens of thousands and hundreds of thousands of people have been held at some point in government jails since the first anti-Assad protests erupted in Syria nearly four years ago.

“I urge the Syrian government to immediately release all those who have been jailed for peaceful expression of their views and to ensure that all those detained are accorded their full due process rights,” Zeid said in a statement.

“In many cases, people are held incommunicado for weeks or months, in particular by political security, state security, military security and air force intelligence branches,” Zeid added.

“This is particularly worrying given the Syrian government’s record of torture and ill-treatment of detainees, which has been well-documented prior to, and during, the conflict,” the high commissioner said. (Source: Syrian Coalition)