Arbitrary detention of a Kurdish politician leader in Qamishli

Fraternity Foundation for Human Rights (FFHR) has learned, through communication with his family, that Faisal Yussef, a citizen of Qamishli city in the northeast of Syria (under Kurdish control), was arrested, at 1:30 am on Monday 2nd April 2018, by a patrol of the Internal Kurdish Security Forces “Asayish

Faisal Youssef, 65 years old, is the chairman of the Kurdish reform movement, a member of the governmental body of Kurdish National Council, and a member of National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces.

According to a member of his family, a patrol of at least 10 of Asayish forces, armed with Kalashnikov, carried out the arrest, where one of the patrol member climbed house balcony and opening the door for the rest of the patrol member without presenting any arrest warrant.

When asked about the reason for detention, the commander of the patrol replied that it was a “political decision”. This confirm that the arrest was politically motivated because of the detainee’s views and not for any other reasons related to violating local laws.

We at FFHR, express out deep concern about such practice that is not compatible with international standards of protection of civil and political liberties guaranteed by the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and is in conflict with the laws and rules of the Democratic Self-Rule Administration which prohibit arbitrary arrests and breaking into houses without warrants. FFHR condemns the arrest of Mr. Yussef on the basis of his political views and urges the leadership of the Democratic Self-Rule Administration for immediate and unconditional release of Mr. Yussef in accordance to its laws that affirm freedom of opinion and expression.

FFHR urges the Democratic Self-Rule Administration to clarify the fate and the where about of Mr. Yussef and to announce the proceedings against him. The failure to disclose these measures constitutes a serious breach of fair trial guarantees, which include procedures of the arrest , preliminary investigation, conditions and nature of the detention, and enable his family to visit him at his place of detention.

FFHR stresses the importance of protecting freedom of opinion and expression and urges the Democratic Self-Rule Administration to undertake serious actions to stop any political arrests, to release any other detainees, to improve the situation of civil liberties, and to refrain from all kind of harassment of its political opponents.

2 April 2018