France Issues Arrest Warrants for Top Syrian Officials

The warrants stem from a long-running case involving two French-Syrian nationals who were arrested in Syria in November 2013 and had disappeared since. The warrants were issued for charges of collusion in torture, forced disappearances, crimes against humanity, and war crimes

France has issued international arrest warrants for three senior Syrian intelligence officials in connection with the deaths of two Franco-Syrian nationals, father and son Mazen and Patrick Dabbagh, who were arrested by Syrian Airforce Intelligence agents in Syria in November 2013 and subsequently disappeared.

The warrants were issued on October 8, but the allegations were made public only on Monday by the International Federation for Human Rights advocacy group (FIDH).

Among those prosecuted is Ali Mamlouk, the current director of National Security in Syria, and the man who oversees the entire Syrian security apparatus. The other two senior Syrian officials are Jameel al-Hassan, Syria's air force intelligence chief, and Abdel Salam Mahmoud, another senior Airforce Intelligence official, who is said to head a detention facility at Mezzeh military airport in Damascus.

The warrants were issued for charges of collusion in torture, forced disappearances, crimes against humanity, and war crimes.

The French judicial inquiry was based on documents known as "Caesar", the pseudonym given to a photographer of the Syrian military police who fled his country in July 2013 carrying with him some 50,000 photos of corpses of Prisoners who died of hunger, disease or torture in the jails of the Assad regime between 2011 and 2013.

 

[Sources: Le Monde, Reuters]

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