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US sanctions Syrian regime prisons, officials

Members of the Syrian regime forces stand at the entrance of a detention centre in the northeastern Syrian city of Hasakeh's Ghweran neighborhood, on July 13, 2015. Syrian regime forces took back several parts of a neighbourhood in the northeastern city of Hasakeh from the Islamic State group on June 29, but heavy clashes continued, a monitor said. AFP PHOTO / YOUSSEF KARWASHAN (Photo credit should read YOUSSEF KARWASHAN/AFP via Getty Images)
Members of the Syrian regime forces stand at the entrance of a detention centre in the northeastern Syrian city of Hasakeh's Ghweran neighborhood, on July 13, 2015 [YOUSSEF KARWASHAN/AFP via Getty Images]

The US sanctioned on Wednesday a slew of Syrian entities, including eight Syrian regime prisons and five senior officials in charge of the facilities, Anadolu Agency reported.

The Treasury Department said the prisons "have been sites of human rights abuses against political prisoners and other detainees."

"The Assad regime has waged a ruthless war against the Syrian people, imprisoning hundreds of thousands of Syrians calling for reform and change, of whom at least 14,000 have been tortured to death," the department said in a statement.

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"More than 130,000 people reportedly remain missing or arbitrarily detained to this day — the vast majority of whom are either presumed dead or are detained without communication with family or legal representation," it added.

Among the entities being sanctioned are the Saydnaya Military Prison, Syrian Military Intelligence head Kifah Moulhem, and Syrian Military Intelligence Branch 290 Commander Wafiq Nasser.

The Treasury Department also announced the designations of Ahrar al-Sharqiya, an armed group that operates in northern Syria with "a record of human rights abuse," as well as its leader, Ahmad Ihsan Fayyad al-Hayes.

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Asia & AmericasMiddle EastNewsSyriaUS
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