04 Feb Screams of Torture in Paris
Paris, the city of lights witnessed a bold step from the Caesar Families Association (CFA) which stepped into the city to absorb its light that gives rise to hope in the broken souls. Those souls that have drowned into the darkness of a brutal regime that does not have mercy, those souls are full of bleeding wounds, which leak purulence combined with blood for the absence of justice in Syria.
CFA, represented by its president Mrs. Maryam Alhallak and a number of the Association’s members, started out scheduled visits in Paris to meet representatives of the International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH) and other organizations in the city. In addition, they attended private meetings with the French President’s Advisor for the Middle East and North Africa and the French Public Prosecutor of war crimes unit, which is responsible for investigations related to Syria. The delegation had a meeting with the French Ambassador of the Human Rights and International Organizations in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in order to deliver the echo of screams of the victims who died under torture in the Assad detention centers. Another meeting was held with French key political actors and decision-makers to introduce the association, its goals, and the reason for its establishment. Mrs. Alhallak demanded taking good care of the victims’ families and support them in every possible way to enable them to achieve the justice they deserve.
Mr. Alallawi considered that these families have exceptional courage enabled them to start this mission in the middle of the unlimited international support for the Assad and his regime, and he demanded to launch investigations into the killings, torture and enforced disappearances that were committed against the victims in the Syrian detention centers.
During the meeting with the representative of the FIDH, Mrs. Clemence expressed that CFA has not yet found the support required to achieve its goals especially justice and accountability. She also promised to allocate the necessary means for the investigations of crimes of torture, and she emphasized the French role in this matter.
Mr. Mazen Darwish (the President of the Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression SCM), commented on the significance of this visit in enhancing the communication with the French authorities and in reaching out to the French Public Prosecutor, in addition to, establishing a direct communication channel with the Office of the French Public Prosecutor and international investigators of war crimes against humanity in order to ensure the continuation of claiming justice. These efforts would also enhance the pressure on all stakeholders to resolve this issue and having the victims themselves lead this process in an effective way.
This visit was focused and highlighted by the French media, where they demanded to handle this issue swiftly and stressed the importance of the French role in pushing for an international criminal court through the United Nation’s General Assembly, and to pressure the Syrian regime to reveal the fate of the victims and the locations of their bodies.