Syrian Opposition Coalition – Syria
Department of Media and Communications
December 28, 2020
Palestinian-Syrian writer and novelist Ismail Al-Shamali on Sunday died in Suwayda prison due to neglect and lack of medical care after spending 25 years in prison. He was imprisoned in response to his anti-regime political views.
The death of al-Shamali in the prisons of the Assad regime represents a double crime: unlawful imprisonment, maltreatment and deprivation as well as neglect leading to death.
This crime is just an example of the injustice hundreds of thousands of Syrians are subjected to and also an example of what thousands of Palestinian-Syrians have been subjected to in the Assad regime’s prisons throughout the past decades.
The plight of detainees in the Assad regime’s prisons must remain a top priority for the international community, rights organizations and activists. Hundreds of thousands of detainees in the Assad regime’s custody are enduring unbearable conditions and brutal maltreatment, including summary execution and neglect leading to death.
Urgent action must be taken by states and organizations in order to ensure the release of detainees, most importantly women, children, the sick and the elderly, as well as ensure access for the International Committee of the Red Cross to the detention centers of the Assad regime.