On May 1, 2021, Syrian regime forces personnel arrested 30 civilians, including two children, from Kanaker village in southwest Damascus suburbs governorate, in Tartus city on the Syrian coast, from where they had been trying to emigrate illegally to Cyprus, and took them to an undisclosed location for SNHR and their families.
The arrests were conducted without any legal arrest warrants being issued by a court, with no members of the detainees’ families being informed of their arrest or whereabouts, and with their phones being confiscated, preventing them from contacting their families or lawyers. SNHR fears that they will be subjected to torture and ultimately classified as forcibly ‘disappeared’, like approximately 85 percent of all detained persons in Syria.
Dozens of Syrian citizens are trying to flee Syria to seek asylum around the world, which is a fundamental human right, providing further stark evidence that it is impossible to coexist with the Syrian regime and its brutal security apparatus which continue with their horrific practices of state terror and torture which constitute crimes against humanity and which take place on a continuous, ongoing basis since 2011 up to this writing. Syria cannot be considered a safe country until it achieves a political transition and shows respect for basic human rights principles, at the very least for the right to life and freedom from enforced disappearance and torture.
SNHR can confirm that at least 131,106 Syrian citizens are still detained or forcibly disappeared in the regime’s detention centers, constituting a grave threat to the detainees’ wellbeing, given the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.