Latest News Human rights groups condemn torture in Lebanese prisons


BEIRUT — Worldwide human rights teams Tuesday condemned acts of torture in Lebanese prisons following the demise of a Syrian refugee in detention and urged authorities to switch the investigation into his demise from a army to a civil court docket.

Photographs surfaced final week of the battered physique of a Syrian who had been held for questioning. The grisly visible made headlines in Lebanon and was adopted by a video of a coroner assessing the physique, which was coated in gashes and bruises. The physique was later recognized as that of Bashar Abdel-Saud, 30, a Syrian refugee who fled the war-torn nation in 2014.

“To make sure transparency and impartiality, Abdel-Saud’s case should urgently be referred to a civilian court docket,” Amnesty’s Regional Director for the Center East and North Africa Heba Morayef mentioned within the assertion. “His household deserves justice and reparations for his or her tragic loss.”

In keeping with Abdel-Saud’s lawyer, officers from Lebanon’s State Safety company arrested the Syrian at his residence in a Palestinian refugee camp in Beirut final week, earlier than calling his household 4 days later asking them to retrieve his physique.

State Safety in a press assertion mentioned Abdel-Saud was arrested for the possession of a faux $50 invoice and had confessed throughout the interrogation that he was combatant for the Islamic State group.

His lawyer denied the costs and State Safety first promised an inner investigation, earlier than the case was transferred to Lebanon’s army court docket.

Lebanon’s army court docket authorities commissioner ordered the arrest of 5 State Safety personnel from the department that held Abdel-Saud in southern Lebanon, in keeping with Amnesty.

State Safety launched a second assertion on Monday, requesting media shops to “not broadcast information associated to the matter, aiming to stir strife and incite tensions particularly in these delicate circumstances Lebanon goes by means of.”

Senior Lebanese officers haven’t commented on the current incident.

The one minister beneath Prime Minister Najib Mikati’s caretaker authorities to take action was Setting Minister Nasser Yassin, who in a tweet condemned the incident and known as for prosecutors to research.

In the meantime, a number of of Lebanon’s lately elected unbiased legislators penned crucial statements.

“What occurred utterly contradicts our aspirations for Lebanon,” Ibrahim Mneimneh, a member of Parliament, instructed The Related Press. “We want human rights to be a key reference level to all of the work we do.”

He added that the safety company conducting an inner investigation is a “battle of curiosity.”

Amnesty, Human Rights Watch, and different human rights teams have echoed comparable sentiments. Human rights organizations have often criticized Lebanon for what they are saying is an incomplete 2017 anti-torture legislation, and authorities not placing it into observe 5 years later.

Human Rights Watch’s Center East and North Africa Director Lama Fakih mentioned torture within the crisis-hit nation has been a years-long drawback.

“Lebanon suffers from a legacy of impunity for torture,” Fakih instructed the AP. “We’ve not but seen steps taken to make sure that sturdy investigations are undertaken and that accountable people are held accountable.”

A number of instances of alleged torture in Lebanon have surfaced in recent times, together with actor and author Ziad Itani, Syrian refugees arrested in camp raids and checkpoints, and protesters in Beirut, Tripoli, and Sidon throughout Lebanon’s antigovernment uprisings in late 2019.

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