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Damascus: Minors released following brutal torture

KURDWATCH, October 13, 2013—On September 4, 2013, Muhammad Sadiq ʿAbdurrahman ʿUthman (b. 1997 in Damascus), Rakan Musa (b. 1996) [further information on the case] and Zuhair Musa (b. 1998 in Damascus), who was also arrested with them, were released from custody for health reasons three months after their arrest. The three minors were accused of having participated in attacks in Damascus. Their trial is scheduled for October 21, 2013. ʿUthman stated to KurdWatch: »In the first six weeks we were brutally tortured during every interrogation. I was interrogated seven times. Each time I was tortured with clubs and whips as well as with electric schocks until I lost consciousness. Then I was roused with cold water in order to be tortured more. My fellow prisoners were also tortured, even fifteen-year-old Zuhair.« The young men were initially presented along with other detainees to a military judge, however he referred their case to a civil court. They were held in a prison run by the National Defense Force, one of the civilian militias armed by the Syrian government. Their last three days in custody were spent with the military police. There they were tortured once again.

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