Home Human Rights Journalism 877 Arrested and Forcibly Disappeared across Afrin Region in 2020

877 Arrested and Forcibly Disappeared across Afrin Region in 2020


Categorized by month and location, this brief report shows the total number of arrests carried out by the armed groups of the Turkey-backed Syrian National Army (SNA) across the territories of Operation Olive Branch throughout 2020

by z.ujayli
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Throughout 2020, Syrians for Truth and Justice (STJ) has documented the arrests, detentions, and forced disappearances carried out across the Syrian/Kurdish Afrin region, as perpetrated by armed groups and security services—the military and civil police—of the Syrian National Army (SNA). At least 877 arrests were verified as have been conducted primarily by 24 parties, including opposition armed groups and security apparatuses. The Turkish Intelligence is also complicit in some of these arrests.

Out of the said arrests, STJ confirmed the release of 420 persons only, and failed to track the remaining 457, who continue to be held incommunicado. Furthermore, of the total, eight children and 70 women were arrested. Only four children and 18 women were released; the other four children and 52 women remain detained without the slightest hint as to their whereabouts.

I.Timeline: arrests throughout 2020

In this section, STJ includes monthly reports documenting arrests over the course of 2020:

  1. In January, 66 persons were arrested, including five women. Only 28 persons were released, while the 38 others were held incommunicado.
  2. In February, 73 persons were arrested, including five women and a child. Only 38 persons were released, while the other 35 were held incommunicado.
  3. In March, 43 persons were arrested, including five women. Only 12 were released, while the other 31 were held incommunicado.
  4. In April, 43 persons were arrested. Only 30 were released, while the other 13 were held incommunicado.
  5. In May, 17 persons were arrested, including a woman. They were all subsequently released.
  6. In June, 40 persons were arrested, including two women. Only 20 were released, while the other 20 were held incommunicado.
  7. In July and August, 101 persons were arrested, including six women and two children. Only 65 were released, while the other 36 were held incommunicado.
  8. Also, in August, 12 women were arrested by the SNA-affiliated armed groups. Two were released lately.
  9. In September, 116 persons were arrested, among them six women and a child. Only 56 were released, while the other 60 were held incommunicado.
  10. In October, 135 persons were arrested, including five women and a child. Only 49 were released, while the other 86 were held incommunicado.
  11. In November and December, 237 persons were arrested, including 22 women and four children. Only 103 were released, while the other 128 were held incommunicado.

II. Mapped out: arrests in and around Afrin region

In this section, STJ locates the arrests which occurred in the seven districts of Afrin region:

  1. In Afrin district: 153 persons were arrested, including 15 women and four children.
  2. In Jindires district: 123 persons were arrested, including 14 women.
  3. In Bulbul district: 45 persons were arrested, including two women.
  4. In Maabatli district: 284 persons were arrested, including 18 women.
  5. In Sharran district: 50 persons were arrested, including a child and five women.
  6. In Rajo district: 125 persons were arrested, including four children and five women.
  7. In Shaykh al-Hadid district: 52 persons were arrested, including four women.
  8. In different parts of Afrin region, 12 women were arrested.
  9. In and around Afrin region, 24 persons were arrested. However, no further information was obtained as to the victims’ birth or residence place.

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How the NY Times whitewashed Turkey’s human rights record in Syria - ARMYNOW.NET March 10, 2021 - 10:20 am

[…] 2020 alone, 877 individuals were arrested across Afrin. The U.N. found that while in detention, civilians, […]

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