On August 28 and 29, 2017, Alkarama wrote to the United Nations Working Group on Enforced Disappearances (WGEID ) regarding the cases of Yasin Issa and his son, Ahmad Issa, as well as Abdul Rahman Al Mushasha, all of whom remain missing since their abductions in Damascus and its surrounding area between 2013 and 2014. The Syrian authorities must provide information on these victims’ whereabouts or fates, or at the least, put them under the protection of the law.
On February 7, 2013, Ahmad Issa and his wife were visiting his parents in Bloudan, a village located 51 kilometres north-west of Damascus, when members of the Syrian army entered the family’s home. The officers arrested Ahmad along with his father, Yasin Issa, and brother, the latter of whom managed to escape from the soldiers later that night. Following their abductions, the victims’ family mandated a lawyer who sought information from several security branches, all to no avail.
In a similar case, Abdul Rahman Al Mushasha, a 24-year-old Jordanian barber, was staying at his friend’s home in the Jaramana neighbourhood of Damascus on March 2, 2014, when members of the Syrian Popular Committees of Jaramana raided the house and arrested him. He was then forced into a car and taken to an unknown location. A former detainee informed Abdul Rahman’s family that he had last seen him in Sednaya prison a year after the arrest, but his family has received no news of him since.
As the world marked the International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances on August 30, the plight of these three victims represents a fraction of the thousands of cases of enforced disappearances that continue to occur in Syria on a regular basis. This trend has intensified since the beginning of the uprising.
For the period 2011-2013, the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic has found that “most disappearances were perpetrated by intelligence and security officers, as well as by the Syrian army, sometimes in conjunction with pro-government militias acting on behalf of the Government.”
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