‘No Trace’ of More Than 67,000 Enforcably Disappeared Syrians

Regime forces are responsible of 96 percent of the enforced disappearance cases, while the Kurds and ISIS are responsible for more than 2,400 cases

According to a joint report published by the Syrian Network for Human Rights and the Euro-Mediterranean Observatory for Human Rights, the two institutions have documented 67,561 cases of enforced disappearance in Syria since mid-March 2011.

The report, entitled “No Trace – the Victims of Enforced Disappearances in Syria”, which was published on Sunday, stated that regime forces are responsible for 96 percent of the enforced disappearance cases (approximately 65,000 cases), while the Kurdish “autonomous government”, ISIS and other armed factions are responsible for more than 2,400 cases.

The report also pointed out that the regime’s security forces deliberately practice forced disappearance of persons in order to erase any evidence of arbitrary arrest operations, torture, and sexual violence. The report added that some people have paid bribes to security officials in order to obtain information about the fate of their children, which appears to be one of the objectives of the enforced disappearances carried out by regime officers and officials.

The report documented the forced disappearance of 58,148 civilians at the hands of regime forces, including 3,879 children and 2,145 women.

The report showed that most of the forcibly disappeared persons who were arrested by the Syrian regime (16,744 cases) were from the countryside of Damascus, followed by Daraa (10,543 case), pointing out that 68 cases of enforced disappearances were taking place daily in 2012, during which the number of cases reached 25,276 cases.

The report spoke of enforced disappearance cases carried out by the Kurdish “autonomous government” forces (352 cases, including 43 children and 9 women), while ISIS was responsible for 1,122 cases, including 109 children and 65 women.

The Nusra Front’s enforced disappearance operations targeted media activists and foreign journalists who did not obtain a license from Nusra before reporting. It also targeted workers at foreign NGOs. The report said the Front locks up these journalists for periods ranging from two months up to eight months before releasing them. Enforced disappearance cases carried out by the Nusra Front forces reached 876 cases, including 35 children and two women.

The enforced disappearance cases carried out by other armed opposition factions reached 211 cases, including 22 children and 11 women.


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