Kurdish human rights activist ‘Abed al-Hafith ‘Abed al-Rahman is now allowed family visits at Aleppo Central Prison, where he now appears to be receiving adequate medical treatment.

‘Abed al-Hafith ‘Abed al-Rahman was brought before a military judge on 22 June, and charged with two offences relating to his work to promote the human rights of Syria's Kurds. A prisoner of conscience, if found guilty he could be sentenced to three years in prison

Many thanks to all who sent appeals. Amnesty International will continue to campaign for ‘Abed al-Hafith ‘Abed al-Rahman by other means.

Background

‘Abed al-Hafith ‘Abed al-Rahman, a 44-year-old Syrian Kurdish human rights activist, had been held incommunicado since he was detained by members of Military Intelligence on 2 March 2010. He is at risk of torture or other ill-treatment.

Military Intelligence officials detained ‘Abed al-Hafith ‘Abed al-Rahman at his home in the city of Aleppo, north Syria, in the presence of his family. They also seized some of his personal belongings, including a book he had written on teaching the Kurdish language and unpublished statements of the Human Rights Organization in Syria (MAF), an unauthorized non-governmental organization formed by members of the Syrian Kurdish minority.

The Syrian authorities have not revealed the reason for ‘Abed al-Hafith ‘Abed al-Rahman’s detention or whether any charges have been brought against him.

‘Abed al-Hafith ‘Abed al-Rahman suffers from a skin allergy as well as a stomach ulcer and rheumatism, for which he requires regular medication; he probably does not have access to this medication in detention.

‘Abed al-Hafith ‘Abed al-Rahman is a member of the Board of Trustees of MAF. Another member of MAF’s Board of Trustees, Naderah ‘Abdo, was present at the house of ‘Abed al-Hafith ‘Abed al-Rahman on 2 March and detained at the same time, but she was released uncharged on 6 March, at the Military Intelligence branch in Aleppo.