Syrian Journalist Freed After ‘Arrest by Intelligence Agents’
Syrian journalist Nizar Nayyouf told AFP Friday he had been freed overnight after being "arrested" and held by intelligence agents Wednesday.
"They threatened me over information I was planning to reveal," he said.
Nayyouf said he was arrested in central Damascus Wednesday while he was on his way for hospital treatment, and was freed at Jabla, south of the port city of Lattakieh.
A Syrian official had denied Thursday that Syrian authorities had kidnapped Nayyouf.
The journalist and human rights activist was released in early May, months before his ten-year sentence ended. But Nayyouf protested days later that the authorities banned him from traveling outside the country for cancer treatment.
Talking to Al Jazeera satellite channel, Nayyouf said that he was still under probation.
Nayyouf, 39, was being treated in Tishreen Hospital, where he went into frequent comas, according to a press release by the Syrian Human Rights Committee (SHRC), quoting his family. The journalist was one of the few political prisoners remaining in the Syrian jails after hundreds were released following an amnesty issued by President Bashar Assad last year.
The activist was reported released in April 2000, but the committee discovered he was only moved to Mazza prison, which was later closed down and turned into a museum.
While in jail, the journalist was awarded a UNESCO prize for press freedom.
According to the SHRC, Nayyouf was then offered freedom by the authorities on the condition that he rejected the $25,000 award – Albawaba.com