[QODLink]
Archive
Rights group accuses Syria of torture

Syria has been accused of arresting six alleged members of the Muslim Brotherhood and torturing at least one, according to a statement issued by a rights group.

Last Modified: 21 May 2005 13:39 GMT
Syria is accused of arresting Islamists who return home

Syria has been accused of arresting six alleged members of the Muslim Brotherhood and torturing at least one, according to a statement issued by a rights group.

The Arab Organisation for Human Rights in Syria said in a statement on Saturday that the six were arrested on 12 May and alleged that authorities arrested all the Islamists who took advantage of an unofficial amnesty to return home.


The organisation said Montasser al-Naeb was arrested in northern Latakia province. It accused Syrian authorities of torturing al-Naeb, who was charged with belonging to the banned Muslim Brotherhood.


The other five, Hussein Mohammad Marei, Tarek al-Zein, Firas al-Khouli, Ahmad Awad and Bilal al-Tatari, were also arrested on the same charges in Zabadani, a city on the outskirts of Damascus, the organization said.

There was no official comment on the group's report. Syrian authorities rarely comment on security matters.

It accused Syrian authorities of arresting all exiled Islamists who return home.


Though Syria has not formally declared an amnesty, Syrian diplomatic missions abroad were instructed last month to give passports to Syrians wishing to return home.


Religion

Human rights activists have said dozens of exiled Syrians have taken up the offer, but some were arrested on arrival.


The activists have warned the exiles not to return without guarantees for their safety or until a general amnesty for all political crimes is issued.


The Syrian government  is urged "not to harm nationals who are practicing their religion"

Arab Organisation for Human Rights in Syria

"It seems that practicing religious rituals has become an obsession for all government security agencies," the organisation said.

It urged the government to release all detainees and "not to harm nationals who are practicing their religion."


President Bashar Assad has released hundreds of political detainees since coming to power in July 2000.

But he has also clamped down on pro-democracy activists, showing there are limits to dissent his administration is willing to tolerate.

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
Country
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
UNHCR says hundreds of people trapped in Yaloke town risk death if they are not evacuated to safety urgently.
'Justice for All' demonstrations swell across the US over the deaths of African Americans in police encounters.
Six former Guantanamo detainees are now free in Uruguay with some hailing the decision to grant them asylum.
Disproportionately high number of Aboriginal people in prison highlights inequality and marginalisation, critics say.
Featured
Long-standing dispute over Christian use of the word 'Allah' raises concerns about a very un-Merry Christmas.
The threat posed by ISIL has prompted thousands of young Kurds to join the PKK.
Baja California - with its own grim history of disappeared people - finds a voice in the fight against violence.
Russian feminist rockers fight system holding 700,000 - the world's largest per capita prison population after the US.
Weeks of growing protests against Muslims continue in Dresden with 15,000 hitting the streets last Monday.