The Secretary-General of the Syrian Opposition Coalition (SOC), Haytham Rahmeh, has welcomed the decision of the French judiciary to prosecute three senior officials of the Assad regime before the criminal court on charges of complicity in the killing of Syrian-French citizens. He stressed that the trial of criminals is a guarantee for achieving political transition in the country and fulfilling the demands of the Syrian people for freedom, dignity, and democracy.
Two French investigative judges have ordered the trial of Ali Mamlouk, Jamil Hassan, and Abdel Salam Mahmoud, for their involvement in the killing of Mazen Dabbagh and his son Patrick, who were detained in 2013 at Mezzeh Airport in Damascus by the regime’s Air Force Intelligence.
Rahmeh emphasized that the Assad regime has committed the most heinous crimes against the Syrian people and cannot be part of the solution in Syria. He pointed out the need to support holding war criminals accountable, which is a fundamental clause in UN resolutions related to Syria, including the Geneva Communique of 2012 and UN Resolutions 2118 and 2254.
Rahmeh also stressed the importance of this decision, especially in light of attempts to rehabilitate the Assad regime and establish a rapport with it. He added that the regime will not change its behavior and will continue to destabilize the region and bring in sectarian militias from Iran.
Ali Mamlouk served as the Director of General Intelligence and, in 2012, became the head of the National Security Bureau, which is the highest intelligence body in Syria. Jamil Hassan worked as the head of the Air Force Intelligence Department, and Major General Abdel Salam Mahmoud was in charge of the investigation in the Air Force Intelligence in Mezzeh prison in Damascus, which is known to be one of the most notorious places of detention in the country, according to the UN Commission of Inquiry.
Patrick Dabbagh was born in 1993 and was a student at the College of Arts and Humanities in Damascus, while his father, Mazen, was a principal educational advisor at the French School in Damascus and was born in 1956. They were detained in November 2013 by officers who claimed to belong to the Air Force Intelligence.
According to Mazen’s son-in-law, who was detained at the same time but was released two days later, the two men were transferred to Mezzeh Prison. Afterward, no information was heard about them until the Assad regime announced their deaths in August 2018. According to the two death certificates, Patrick died on January 21, 2014, while Mazen died on November 25, 2017.
(Source: SOC’s Media Department)