Great News! “UAE Five” Pardoned by President

Syrian activist Ghassan Yasin was released from detention on 10 November. He had been held since 18 August.

A source has told Amnesty International that on 3 November Ghassan Yasin was brought before judicial authorities in his home town, Aleppo, northern Syria, on charges related to the organization of protests and insulting the president. According to the same source, a judicial official informed Ghassan Yasin that he would be among a number of detainees who the authorities were planning to release on the occasion of Eid al-Adha, a religious holiday.

On 5 November the Syrian authorities announced that 553 detainees "who were involved in the events [referring to the unrest in Syria since mid-March] but whose hands were not stained with blood" had been released. Ghassan Yasin did not appear to be among them, but he was freed several days later, on 10 November, from Aleppo's central prison. It is not clear whether the authorities counted him within the 553, but, for some reason, only released him several days after the announcement.

Amnesty International's source stated that Ghassan Yasin was initially held at the Political Security branch in Aleppo, from where he was transferred to the central prison in Aleppo on 10 October. Two days later, he was reportedly moved to the Political Security branch in Syria's capital, Damascus, where he remained until 29 October. It appears that he was then taken to the Military Security branch in Aleppo, before being brought back to the central prison in Aleppo on 2 November.

Thanks to all of those who took action on behalf of Ghassan Yasin. No further appeals from the network are required at present but Amnesty International will continue to monitor this case.