Montreal, Canada - February 05, 2004

When will Syria release the Lebanese detained in its prisons ?

On the 29th of January 2004, Lebanon welcomed with great relief the release of Lebanese citizens detained in Israel, as well as the bodies of fallen fighters during the Israeli occupation of South Lebanon. Germany was the main sponsor in the negotiations that lead to that achievement.

On the 30th of January 2004, prominent human rights activists reported that Syria has freed 30 political prisoners, and another 90 will be released in the coming days. Many of the freed prisoners belong to the Muslim Brotherhood, Hizb Al-Tahrir (Liberation party), had completed their sentences, or were in ill health. No name for any Lebanese detainee was on those lists.

RCPL considers that such steps are important for fostering human rights and peace in the region. However, RCPL is still deeply concerned about the plight of more than 300 Lebanese citizens still detained in Syrian prisons. 

RCPL requests that the Canadian government pursues a strategy of negotiation between the Syrian and Lebanese authorities in order to bring about the release of all Lebanese detainees from Syrian prisons, as well as the repatriation of the bodies of those who died under torture during their detention. 

back to top