Montreal, Canada - October 13, 2003

A Syrian ex-detainee identifies some of the Lebanese detained in Syrian prisons

On October 3rd 2003, the Lebanese Maronite Patriarch, Nasrallah Boutros Sfeir, received Mr. Nizar Nayouf who submitted to him a list of 32 Lebanese still detained in Syrian prisons. The list included names of detainees seen and identified by Mr. Nayouf during his 10 years detention in Syrian prisons.

Mr. Nayouf is a very well-known Syrian journalist and a human rights activist who was detained by the Syrian regime from 1992 till 2001, for his activities as a defender of human rights and civil liberties in Syria. During his detention, he was tortured, which lead to severe and permanent damages to his body: partial paralysis in lower extremities and severely deteriorated eyesight.

The list included, among others, names of Lebanese political figures and soldiers from the Lebanese Army who have been abducted during or after the Syrian invasion of the remaining free zone of Lebanon after a fierce battle with the Lebanese Army in 1990. 

It is noteworthy that the Syrian and Lebanese authorities keep denying the presence of any Lebanese detainee in Syria, although many of them were seen there by their relatives at different times. 

Most of the names presented by Mr. Nayouf already figure in the list RCPL has compiled about Lebanese detainees in Syrian prisons:
http://www.rcplonline.org/research_studies.htm..

The continuous detention and torture of the Lebanese detainees constitute severe violations of all international and human laws that guarantee human rights and dignity for every person. 

RCPL urges the Syrian authorities to immediately cease all types of torture and release all Lebanese detained in Syrian prisons. Given the continuous denial of the Lebanese and Syrian governments of the presence of any Lebanese detainee in Syria, and the danger threatening the life of those detainees, RCPL also urges the international community, more specifically the Canadian government, to use all possible means with the Syrian government in order to immediately release all Lebanese detainees in Syrian prisons. 

Here is the full list of detainees’ name, birth and abduction dates as submitted by Mr. Nayouf:

1. 

Khadijeh Yehya Bukhary- 1940- Singer- abducted on April 28, 1992

2. 

Georges Aby Halloun- First Lieutenant- abducted on October 13, 1990

3. 

Michael Youssef al Hasbani-Soldier in the Lebanese Army- abducted on October 13, 1990

4. 

Marwan Zoghbi- ( dates not available )

5. 

Claude Hanna Khoury- 1964- Soldier in the Lebanese Army- abducted on June 20, 1985

6. 

Fouad Asaker- Sergeant in the Lebanese Army- abducted on October 13, 1990

7. 

Jean Michael Nakhleh- 1970- Soldier in the Lebanese Army- abducted on October 13, 1990

8. 

Jacques Hanna Nakhoul- 1962- Soldier in the Lebanese Army- abducted on October 13, 1990

9. 

Marwan Ryad Mechealani- 1964- Adjutant in the Lebanese Army- abducted on October 13, 1990

10. 

Walid Mahmud Zarkout- married and has three daughters-Custom employee- abducted in 1982

11. 

Robert Bou Serhal- 1962- First Lieutenant- abducted on October 13, 1990

12. 

Antoine Zakhour Zakhour-1963- Soldier in the Lebanese Army- abducted on October 13, 1990

13. 

Chamel Hussein Kanaan- 1959 Shebaa- Soldier in the Lebanese Army- abducted on June 16, 1986

14. 

Tanios Charbel Zogheib- First Lieutenant- abducted on October 13, 1990

15. 

Boutros Khawand- was in the Palestine branch (235) related to the military intelligence on December 6, 1993, was interrogated by Brigadier Salah Zhgaibi and Brigadier Muhsen Hilal, then transferred to an unknown place in March the same year. It’s thought that he has been transferred to branch 392 of the old Military intelligence headquarters, then to the new Military intelligence headquarters in the Baramka area, Kfarsousah section.

16. 

Father Alber Cherfan (Antonine) – abducted on October 13, 1990

17. 

Father Sleiman Abu Khalil (Antonine) - abducted on October 13, 1990

18. 

Tanios Kameel Haber- Soldier in the Lebanese Army- abducted on October 13, 1990

19. 

Drar Abd Kader- 1942- abducted on March 6, 1986

20. 

Gergy Malik Hanna- 1943- Professor in the Lebanese University- abducted on September 10, 1985

21. 

Raeef Fouad Dagher- 1947 Majdalouna Chouf- abducted on June 6, 1990

22. 

Racheed Ahmed Khalil- 1965 Ghazieh- abducted in 1985

23. 

Georges Joseph Asmar- 1949- abducted by the Syrian National Party on February 9, 1985, who handed him later to the Syrians

24. 

Florence Michel Raad-1945- journalist- she was abducted by the Syrian National Party, then handed to Hizbullah, then to the Syrians

25. 

Elias Michel Abed El Nour- 1955 Msaitbe-abducted in Damascus airport on March 8, 1984

26. 

Victor Beni Farhat-1951 Ebel Sake- abducted on August 1985

27. 

Ziad Youssef Mourkos- Zakrit - Musician- abducted on November 21, 1984

28. 

Elie Abu Nader-40 yrs old- musician- abducted on November 21, 1984

29. 

Adel Kamal Dib- 1947 Aley- abducted by the Syrian National Party who handed him to the Syrians on January 17, 1984

30. 

Issam Haseeb Kehdi - June 8, 1954 Rayak- abducted by Amal party who handed him to the Syrians on October 26, 1983

31. 

Antoine Michel Mezher- 1949 Jel El Dib- abducted from Badaro Phone station, on January 16, 1976

32. 

Antoine Ghaleb Khazaka- 1961 Jdita - abducted by the Syrian National Party who handed him to the Syrians on June 21, 1982

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