Mohammad Mohadessin, Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the National Council of Resistance of Iran described the horrible crime in Saydnaya prison an unprecedented crime against humanity that was committed by the Assad regime’s henchmen, with the support of the mullahs’ anti-human regime and the Iranian Revolutionary Guards and its intelligence apparatus.
Many methods (styles) used in this crime against humanity, are similar to mass executions in Iran, in particular the massacre of 30,000 political prisoners in 1988.
“The catastrophe of Saydnaya prison once again highlights the necessity of expelling Iranian Revolutionary Guards and its militias, which are the only obstacle to the overthrow of Assad’s dictatorship”, he added.
Peace and tranquility in the region is only possible with the eviction of the Iranian regime from Syria, Iraq, Yemen and other countries in the region, and the removal of regimes and militias affiliated to the Iranian regime.
On Tuesday, Amnesty International accused the Syria government of hanging up to 13,000 people over the course of five years, in what they referred to as a “policy of extermination”. The report, titled “Human Slaughterhouse: Mass hanging and extermination at Saydnaya prison” details a gruesome ritual of mass hangings that occurred during 2011 and 2015.
According to reports, once a week, at least 50 prisoners were taken for arbitrary trials, beaten and then hanged. The hangings took place in secret at night, according to the report. “Throughout this process, they remain blindfolded. They do not know when or how they will die until the noose was placed around their necks.”
The report noted that the victims were “overwhelmingly ordinary civilians who are thought to oppose the government.” Not only were prisoners killed by hanging, other detainees at the prison were killed after being tortured and systemically deprived of food, water and medical care.
The majority of the interviews that Amnesty International used as a basis for their report were carried out in Turkey, because the organization has been barred from Syria. They interviewed 84 people in total for the report. Since 2011, Amnesty International has attempted to engage with the Syrian authorities regarding human rights, such as torture, enforced disappearances and deaths in custody, but have received no responses to their requests for additional information or clarification.
In comments published on Tuesday, President Bashar al-Assad insisted that “defending” his country in a time of war was more important than a potential case against his government in the UN court at The Hague. “We have to defend our country by every mean, and when we have to defend it by every mean, we don’t care about this court, or any other international institution,” said Assad.
This report was released just weeks before peace talks are set to take place in Switzerland, with the goal of ending the six-year civil war.
“The upcoming Syria peace talks in Geneva cannot ignore these findings. Ending these atrocities in Syrian government prisons must be put on the agenda,” said Lynn Maalouf, deputy director for research at Amnesty’s Beirut office.
Various opposition Syrian opposition groups have called for unobstructed access to the regime-run jails and accuse Syria of carrying out war crimes and “crimes against humanity”.
Previously, the organization said that more than 17,700 people were estimated to have died in government custody in Syria since March 2011. That figure did not include the estimated 13,000 executed at Saydnaya. All of these deaths are meant to crush any dissent within the Syrian population, according to Maalouf.
“The cold-blooded killing of thousands of defenseless prisoners, along with the carefully crafted and systematic programmes of psychological and physical torture that are in place inside Saydnaya prison cannot be allowed to continue,” said Maalouf.
A UN investigation last year accused Assad’s government of carrying out a policy of “extermination” in its jails. Amnesty International has given the names of the 87 individuals, including prison guards and officials, responsible for these deaths to unspecified bodies, that they indicated were able to conduct credible investigations into the prisons and these killings.