Assad Soldiers in Captivity Renew Release Appeal

The detained soldiers begged to be treated like Christians and others exchanged

“I never imagined that our calls for freedom from captivity by the Free Syrian Army  would go without impact and would not resonate with the Syrian regime,” a captive officer from the Syrian army, detained by Liwa al-Tawhid rebel Islamist group, said in a video.

 

The officer expressed shock that dozens of Syrian Arab Army soldiers are still in captivity while Assad's regime has made many exchange dealing with Syrian rebels.

 

"We are not Iranians or nuns," he said.

 

Some 40 officers from the Syrian army have issued an appeal for release.

 

“We just want the regime to treat us like it has treated Shiites and Christians in Maaloula and Yabroud” they said, after their first appeal to the regime two month ago was ignored and a refusal from the regime to accept Free Syrian Army demands to free 1,000 detainees from the opposition. The regime's offer was to free no more that 50 detainees.

 

Many hostages held by the FSA are high ranking military officials, ranging from Lieutenant to Captain and Majors, besides other regular soldiers from the Alawite sect.

 

On Tuesday, detained officers requested the media office of the FSA to again film their appeal and broadcast the videos to television channels like Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya.

 

Many Syrians insisted on publishing the video on pro-regime Facebook pages and social media sites, hoping to put pressure on the regime to act to free their relatives and love ones.

 

One detained colonel with Liwa al-Tawhid said: “All what we want from the regime is to deal with our issue in the same way it dealt with the Maaloula's Nuns and other Christian hostages. Why is it wasting time and refusing the exchange?”

 

A member in Liwa al-Tawhid said: "Despite knowing the size of their crimes, which we have documented, none of the detained officers and soldiers have been beaten or harmed. We have arrested them for exchange with our detainees only.”

 

The neglect of the detained soldiers has not been limited to Syrian soldiers; a Russian military expert was captured in Aleppo by the FSA and appealed to his government, but so far has heard no reply.

 

Translated and edited by The Syrian Observer

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