Appeal for the release of Kurdish human rights
activist in Syria
April 12, 2010
ALEPPO, — Mr. Abdul-Hafiz Abdul al-Rahman, born 1 August 1965, [father Abdul Rahim, mother Khadijah] from al-Ashrafieh in Aleppo, was arrested on 2 March 2010 by military security forces in Aleppo. We
believe that this is due to his human rights activities. His whereabouts are unknown, and we are concerned that he is likely to be subjected to torture at the hands of the Syrian authorities.
Abdul-Hafiz Abdul al-Rahman is an ill man. He has chronic eczema, anaemia, rheumatism, sensitivity in his eyes, diabetes, high blood pressure, kidney pain for which he needs clean water, and Meniers Disease, and a sickness in his stomach. He has been dependent on
medication and we are concerned that he will not have access to the appropriate treatments in detention.
Abdul-Hafiz Abdul al-Rahman, Kurdish human rights activist in Syria
Our concern arises from the knowledge that political detainees often are not given medicines for their illnesses in prison, which adds to the degrading treatment they suffer and can shorten their life expectancy. No-one has been allowed to see him and so there remains significant suspicion that he is not being cared for appropriately.
Abdul-Hafiz Abdul al-Rahman is
• a respected authority in relation to international human rights, and is invited to coach others in these matters;
• a Member of the Arabic Network for Election Monitoring;
• a Member of the Board of Trustees of the Human Rights Organization in Syria – MAF; He is not attached to any political party.
He is a Kurdish linguist, a writer and a journalist, and has contributed to the magazine editor `Steer' (translates as `Star') with Zagros Hajo, and Razo Osseh. He contributes with Siamand Ibrahim and Abdul Salam Dari in publishing the magazine `Aso'
(translates as `Horizon').
The authorities have confiscated:
• his library of books, manuscripts, his poetry, and translations.
• Pamphlets regarding the dissemination of a culture of human rights; and copies of the international conventions signed by the Syrian Arab Republic were also taken.
• He was the author of a tutorial for Kurdish language for beginners
which was taken, together with two other tutorials that he has written;
• along with his computer hard drive in a raid on his home by an armed patrol in front of his young children and guests.
He was a member of the team that monitored the Kurdistan election and he was expected to monitor the Iraqi elections in 2010, but his home was raided and he was detained before the elections took place.
International Support Kurds in Syria – SKS call on the UK and other European Governments to make representations to the Syrian Government on behalf of Abdul-Hafiz Abdul al-Rahman as a human rights activist,
to effect his release. He was last known to be in Military Security detention in Aleppo. We also call on these Governments to record the treatment he has received for his medical conditions, whilst in detention . The Syrian Government is accountable for its detention and treatment of human rights activists under the following international treaties (quote from the Syrian Report to the UN
Committee on Torture 2009.
Co-Chair: International Support Kurds in Syria Association [SKS]
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