Friday, October 5, 2012

Syria: Prominent Human Rights Lawyer Abducted

Government Forces Suspected

October 4, 2012

"(New York) – The prominent human rights lawyer Khalil Maatouk was abducted while driving to his office on the morning of October 2, 2012, and has not been seen since. Maatouk’s family and his lawyer suspect that government forces are holding him incommunicado. The Syrian government should immediately release him if he is in its custody, Human Rights Watch said.
According to a close relative of Maatouk, he disappeared on October 2 while driving to work with a family friend, Mohamed Zaza, who is also missing. Zaza was driving him to work because Maatouk, 53, has health problems that make it difficult for him to drive. The men never arrived at their destination and their families have not been able to locate their car.
“Khalil Maatouk’s disappearance is a stark reminder of the grave risks that brave human rights activists are taking in Syria just to document the daily horrors,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, director of the Middle East and North Africa division at Human Rights Watch. “These disappearances will only end when the government finally lifts the veil from its detention facilities and lets monitors in.”...."

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