Kurdish human rights activist arrested in Qamishli

December 31, 2010 by  
Filed under News, Syria

Kurdish Organization for Defending Human Rights and Public Freedoms in Syria – DAD, Human Rights Organization in Syria – MAF , Syrian Committee for Human Rights – MAD and Kurdish Committee for Human Rights in Syria – al-Rased report the arrest of Walid Mahmoud Youssef, member of the Board of Trustees of the Kurdish Organization for Defending Human Rights and Public Freedoms in Syria – DAD, in Qamishli on 23 December 2010. He is a pharmacist and was taken from a doctor’s clinic on the prextext of an inquiry about some personal matters. Since that time there has been no information of his whereabouts or the reasons for his arrest, and he has been isolated from the outside world. Walid Mahmoud Youssef , born 1971, is a graduate of the Faculty of Pharmacy in the former Soviet Union. He lives in Qamishli with his wife and three children.

Kurdish Organization for Defending Human Rights and Public Freedoms in Syria – DAD, Human Rights Organization in Syria – MAF,  Syrian Committee for Human Rights – MAD and Kurdish Committee for Human Rights in Syria – al-Rased condem and strongly denounce the detention of their colleague Walid Mahmoud Youssef, and express deep concern as to his fate. They call on the security services to stop making arbitrary arrests that are outside the law, and which constitute a flagrant violation of fundamental rights and freedoms guaranteed by the permanent Syrian constitution of 1973, and which are pursuant to the State of Emergency and martial law declared in the country since 8 March1963.

The arrest of Walid Mahmoud Youssef constitutes a violation of Syria’s obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which it ratified in 1969 and that entered into force in 1976, specifically Articles 9, 14, 19, 21 and 22. This arrest is a clear violation of the Declaration on the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, adopted and proclaimed by General Assembly resolution of the United Nations No. 52/144 of 9 December 1988, specifically articles 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.

The organisations demand the immediate release of Walid Mahmoud Youssef and all prisoners of opinion and expression held in prisons and the detention system. They call for the series of arbitrary detention to stop, as it is a crime against freedom and personal security; the withdrawal of the State of Emergency and martial law; and the upholding of all laws and legislation that protect special freedoms and democracy.

Kurdish Organization for Defending Human Rights and Public Freedoms in Syria – DAD, Human Rights Organization in Syria – MAF and Kurdish Committee for Human Rights in Syria – al-Rased call upon the Syrian government to implement the recommendations of assessments within the bodies of the international and regional human rights treaties, and to fulfill its international obligations as signatory to the international covenants on human rights.

25 December 2010

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