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Nearly 75,000 Syrians ‘forcibly disappeared’ since 2011

August 31, 2016 at 10:59 am

The Syrian Network for Human Rights has revealed that it has documented 74,607 cases of enforced disappearance across Syria since the outbreak of the revolution in March, 2011.

In a report published on Tuesday entitled “Prolonged Pain” the organisation said that “government forces” are responsible for at least 71,533 cases of enforced disappearance. That figure includes 7,319 members of anti-government forces and 64,214 civilians, among whom were at least 4,109 children and 2,377 women.

The organisation accuses Daesh of being responsible for 1,479 cases of enforced disappearance including 118 children and 87 women. The Fateh Al-Sham Front, meanwhile, is said to be responsible for 892 disappearances, including 41 children and 3 women. Forces linked to the Kurdish autonomous region are held accountable for at least 397 cases; 61 children and 11 women are among those who have disappeared. Armed opposition groups have, it is alleged, forcibly disappeared 306 people, including 29 children and 14 women.

The report labels the Syrian regime of Bashar Al-Assad as the worst in terms of enforced-disappearance crimes in the modern age. The practice has been deep rooted since the 1980s, during the rule of Assad’s father Hafez. Around 17,000 people, mostly from Hama, have suffered from this crime.

The human rights network called on the UN Security Council to assume its responsibilities with respect to forcibly disappeared persons in Syria. In the meantime, it insisted that pressure should be placed on the Syrian regime to give the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic access to all detention centres in order to investigate the horrendous allegation on human rights violations in therein and hold those who are responsible accountable for their crimes.