SOHR: Detained and absentees in Assad's prisons became goods for sale; thousands of deaths

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that the Damascus government uses the file of detainees and persons who disappeared in its basements as a commodity that it trades in exchange for huge sums of money for their release; noting that nearly 16,000 civilians including 125 children and 64 women were killed in those detention centers.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights(SOHR) said that the Caesar Act coming into effect in the middle of last year, which the United States of America imposed on the Damascus government, aimed primarily at releasing detainees in government prisons, explaining that only hundreds were released, all of them either through Russian mediation and guarantees or through paying huge sums of money.

According to the observatory, "2,692 people were released during the past year from various Syrian governorates."

'Bribes and guarantees'

75% of the detainees' release was done through demanding their families huge sums amounting to hundreds of thousands of dollars, which were paid to officers and officials within the Damascus government as a bribe, while 25% of the others were released through Russian mediators and guarantees, especially in the areas of "reconciliations and settlements," according to the observatory.

In the governorates of Damascus and its countryside, the government released 620 detainees, including a child under the age of 18, and 8 female citizens, and those evacuated from areas such as Al-Midan, the Yarmouk camp, and other neighborhoods within the capital, Damascus, Kanaker, Al-Raheeba, Douma, Kafr Batna, Hamouriyah, Saqba, Hatit Al-Turkman, Al-Maliha, and other areas in the countryside of the capital.

In the province of Daraa, 538 people were released from the cities, towns and villages of the governorate, a large part of them were released according to Russian guarantees and orders, while 443 people were released from Aleppo governorate, and 396 people from the Syrian coast were released during the past year.

In Deir Ezzor, 144 civilians were released, and 136 from Idlib governorate, such as Maarat al-Numan and its countryside, Jisr al-Shughour, Saraqib and its countryside, Kansafra, Hasm, and Iblin, 135 from Homs governorate, and 122 from Hama governorate.

On the other hand, it released 78 people from Al-Hasakah city, 49 from Al-Raqqa governorate, 17 from As-Suwayda and 14 from Quneitra.

'Dealing with the detainees' file’

The observatory indicated that the Damascus government trades in the file of detainees as its officers and officials gain huge sums of money from, through a wide network that starts with brokers, lawyers, judges and officers and ends with officers of different ranks and military and political officials to uncover their fate and release them.

According to SOHR, the number of those who were killed under torture in the prisons of the Damascus government is about 16,236 civilians (16,047 men and youths, 125 children under the age of eighteen and 64 women), since the so-called “Syrian revolution” began in 2011.

While the total number of those who died, according to the observatory, in the detention centers reached 104 thousand, where they were executed and killed in detention centers and prisons of the government forces and intelligence, including more than 83% who were liquidated and killed in these detention centers between May 2013 and the month in October 2015: more than 30,000 of them were killed in the notorious Sednaya prison, while the second predominant percentage was in the Air Force Intelligence Administration.


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