Amnesty International Briefing: Lebanon Torture Report

July 17, 2013

Amnesty International Briefing: Lebanon Torture Report

"I walked to the officer's door and waited outside. While I was sitting, a soldier came and hit me on my hand at first. Then soldiers pulled up my shirt from the front and covered my face. As soon as I was taken to the officer's office, two soldiers hit me on the top of my stomach. I fell on the floor and couldn't breathe. Then they started beating me on my face and on my back, with slaps, fists, kicks on my back and my waist.Then a soldier, who was smoking, put his cigarette out on my lower back.

"The officer approached me, grabbed my hair and kicked me hard. My head fell to the ground face down, so he put his foot on my cheek and started squashing me hard (the other cheek was on the ground)… It was as if he was squashing a cigarette on the floor to put it out.

"Then the officer asked the soldier to start recording the minutes of the interview. He said: 'Write down: he threatened a soldier and told him: tonight I will show you what I will do.'

"I said: 'No, sir, this did not happen.' The officer told me to shut up and they all started hitting me.

"Then they handcuffed me and put me in a military vehicle and drove off. On the way, the soldiers started hitting my head with a rifle. We arrived at a military centre in al-Miyye-w-Miyye in Sidon and there I was ordered to sign a document, which I was not allowed to read. So I said, 'I don't want to sign something I did not do.' So the soldiers started beating me up. I had to sign otherwise they would have hit me again… Then they laid me on a wall and squeezed my head between the wall and a metal cupboard there, and they started pressing the cupboard against my head.

"Then I was taken to the Mohamed Zgheib military base. There, soldiers beat me up and interrogated me. They took me to the Army Intelligence section at the base. There I was hit with a rubbery thing hard on my neck and then I was locked in a small cell with around 30 detainees.

"Then I could hear in the distance the morning call to prayer. The Intelligence men took me from the cell, photographed me and started questioning me. The interrogator said: 'You threatened a soldier.' I said, 'It's not true. I offered the soldiers water and I even responded to their request to check for them if there were any fighters waiting to trap them at the entrance of [Ain al-Hilwe refugee] camp, which is near my home.'

"I slept there and then was taken along with other detainees to the Ministry of Defence in Beirut. There, I was beaten up badly. The other detainees and I would ask for water and they wouldn't give it to us. There were some nice soldiers who would give us water secretly. I was then asked to strip naked, including taking off my underwear, and I was ordered to face the wall and squat and then stand up [probably to search him].

"They then took a photo of me, took my fingerprints and gave me something to eat and drink while I was blindfolded. Later, they took me to an interrogator who asked me questions. He did not hit me. He asked how many times I took part in the protests called for by Sheikh Ahmed al-Asseer. I told him several times. He asked how many times I attended al-Asseer's lectures. I said, 'Only once'… He also asked me about names of people who fight for or are with al-Asseer.

"Then the soldiers took me to another room where they threatened to give me electric shocks, but they did not. I was then taken to another military position but I didn't know what it was because I was blindfolded. Soldiers there hit me just a bit - only slaps on my neck. And I was released Thursday late afternoon.

"Throughout my three-day detention, I couldn't pee properly. The jailers would say, 'You only have 30 seconds,' so I would get tense and afraid to wet myself if I was dragged out of the toilet."