The Hague – The Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) has briefed the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances on the case of the citizen, Ahmad Salah al-Dyeab, who was a food factory worker at the time of his arrest. Al-Dyeab, born in 1994 and originally from Bsierien town, west of Hama governorate, was arrested by Syrian regime forces personnel on Tuesday, January 29, 2013, at a temporary checkpoint on the road to Jabal Abu Darda in the southern suburbs of Hama governorate, along with five of his friends, while he was traveling from the northern suburbs of Homs governorate to Bsierien village in the southern suburbs of Hama governorate, where his family lives. He was taken to the Hama city branch of the Syrian regime’s Military Intelligence Directorate, and then to an undisclosed location. He has been forcibly disappeared ever since, with his fate remaining unknown to his family as well as to SNHR.
The SNHR has also briefed the UN Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, and the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism, as well as briefing the UN Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health, specifically in regard to al-Dyeab’s case.
Syrian authorities have denied any connection with the enforced disappearance of citizen Ahmad Salah al-Dyeab. SNHR has been unable to determine his fate, as have his family members, who fear that they may be arrested and tortured by regime personnel themselves if they continue to ask about his whereabouts and fate, as has happened in numerous previous cases.
SNHR has called on the UN Committee on Enforced Disappearance, the UN Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, and the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism, as well as the UN Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health, to intervene and to demand that Syrian authorities release al-Dyeab immediately, as well as to secure the release of thousands of other forcibly disappeared citizens whose whereabouts and current conditions must also be revealed.
Although the Syrian government is not a party to the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearances, it is indisputably a party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Arab Charter on Human Rights. Enforced disappearance constitutes a violation of both instruments.
SNHR also confirms that there are well-founded fears that many of those forcibly disappeared by the Syrian regime since 2011 may have been subjected to torture and possibly died due to torture, with the number of citizens forcibly disappeared by the regime continuing to grow.