14,000 Killed by Syrian Govt Forces Via 72 Torture Methods, SNHR Report

Published October 17th, 2019 - 09:32 GMT
Barbaric methods of torture  (Twitter)
Barbaric methods of torture (Twitter)
Highlights
ISIS extremist groups killed 57 people through torture, the reports said, while factions of the armed opposition killed a further 43.

More than 14,000 people have been killed while being tortured by Syrian government forces using crucifixion, eye gouging and rape during the country's brutal civil war, a report has claimed.

As many as 72 different barbaric methods of torture have been used by President Bashar al-Assad's regime, that have led to the deaths of 173 children and 45 women, according to a horrifying new study.

The 25-page document by the Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) states that the systematic and widespread brutal torture in the Syrian regime's detention centres and military-run 'hospitals' constitutes a 'crime of extermination'. 

It states at least 14,298 people died between March 2011 and September this year in Syria as a result of torture at the hands of various sides in the conflict.

Among those deaths at least 14,131, including 173 children and 45 women, died due to torture in government prisons, according to the report. 

ISIS extremist groups killed 57 people through torture, the reports said, while factions of the armed opposition killed a further 43.

Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) killed 47 while in their custody and another 20 were killed by parties the non-profit human rights body was unable to identify.

A total of 72 methods of torture were found to have been used against detainees, SNHR states.


These include pouring scalding hot water on the victim's abdomen and back, drowning and suffocating.  

Electricity was also used as a torture method, which involved using an electric baton on the detainee's stomach or genitals.

Others were forced to endure a technique called 'The Crucifixion' in which the victim's hands and feet were bound to a cross before being beaten, particularly around the genitals.

Both men and women were forced to strip naked and made to sexually abuse and even rape each other, SNHR claims. 

Torture practices including crushing the head, smashing teeth, pulling out nails and gouging eyes, were also documented. 

Garden shears were used to cut off body parts including reproductive organs, noses were stapled along with ears and lips, according to the document. 

A method known as the 'flying carpet' was used, that saw victims tied to a folded wooden board and bent forwards and backwards, causing severe spinal damage.  

Some detainees were tied to metal chairs and given an electric current through body, which led to severe nervous system damage, the report said.

Fire-related torture was also used, in which a metal skewer was heated to the highest possible temperature and held against 'sensitive parts of the body'.

Burning with oil, chemicals, insecticides and even gunpowder ignited onto the victim's body was also used. 

Victims were allegedly hung in various degrees of suspension for days at a time and whipped as they dangled in the air.

Detainees were also made to squat, stand on one foot and were wedged into tyres for days and then beaten, according to the SNHR. 

Fadel Abdul Ghany, chairman of SNHR, said: 'Despite all the data that confirm the brutal torture practiced by the Syrian regime, which amount to genocide, no one has intervened to protect civilians and to save the reputation of international law. 

'The Syrian situation constitutes a blatant failure of the Security Council's response to conflict resolution, with the only solution remaining being through international intervention outside the Security Council to save the lives of 128,000 Syrian citizens who are still in detention, subjected to torture and deprived of health care, making them vulnerable to death due to torture.' 

Other methods used to torture prisoners included denying access to medical treatment, not allowing them to wash or use the toilet.

Some victims were stacked on top of each other and subjected to starvation as well as sleep deprivation, then refused clothes and blankets.

In some cases, both males and females are forced to, 'strip naked during inspection or torture sessions, to inflict as much harm as possible or to insult human dignity', the report states.

Prisoner also faced 'rape or inserting tools in reproductive organs', the SNHR said.

The report went on to state: 'Detainees suffer unspeakably in the Syrian regime's detention centres. 

'The detainee's clothes are often worn, soiled, ragged, and torn as a result of beatings. This is the primary contributor to the spread of illness, disease epidemics, and infections. 

'And because of the narrowness of cells and overcrowding, detainees must take turns to stand, sit and sleep.'

Since the beginning of the eight-year conflict, 21,839 women have been killed in total by the Syrian regime, with 1,479 who died at the hands of Russian forces who have backed President Assad.

Some 22,733 children were also killed by government forces during the fighting and via bombing of civilians areas, the report states. 

The Syrian conflict took on a new development this month when Turkish forces moved into the northern border to attack the Kurdish militia positions following a US pullout of troops from the region.

The Kurds then sought the backing of President Assad to protect them from the Turkish invasion that has seen a bombardment of border towns. 

This article has been adapted from its original source.    


© Associated Newspapers Ltd.

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