9/2 - The National Organization for Human Rights in Syria (NOHR) said it was denied an operating permit by the social affairs ministry and blasted the move as a failure by the authorities to respect the law. A statement by the group said it operated "within the framework of the law" and vowed to continue its work in defense of "human rights and political detainees." (Arabic. Elaph, 9/2/06). The group comprises around 60 people, mostly lawyers and engineers, and includes representatives of various religions and ethnic groups in Syria. Its president, Ammar al-Qurabi, was arrested in mid-March at Damascus airport and detained for three days following a trip to the United States and France.
9/3 - A statement by the Syrian Human Rights Committee (SHRC) said that a Syrian Kurdish activist Naime Abdo was arrested and brutally tortured, which necessitated her transfer to the military hospital in Aleppo on August 30. (Arabic. SHRC, 9/3/06).
9/4 - Dissident and former MP Riad Seif issued a statement detailing his constant harrassment by the Syrian security apparatus since his release from jail in January 2006. (Arabic. ME Transparent, 9/4/06). Seif said that the Syrian security services ordered him to desist from political activity and told him not to give interviews to the media, and threatened that if he did not obey these orders, the Syrian regime would be forced to arrest or kill him. (MEMRI, 9/19/06). The statement offers a snapshot of the regime's tactics in dealing with the opposition.
9/5 - A statement from the Paris office of the Kurdish Democratic Party in Syria (PDK-S/Al-Party) said that the authorities continue to detain Kurdish national figure Abdul Rahman Wello, and have refused all pleas to release him. Wello is 70 years old and was arrested on June 19 but has not yet been charged. (Arabic. Via "Free Syria," 9/5/06). The statement added that according to information received by the PDK-S/Al-Party, is currently being held in a Damascus jail where he is being maltreated despite his old age and despite his fragile health which continues to deteriorate.
9/5 - On September 5, the authorities released one of the detained signatories of the Beirut-Damascus Declaration (BDD). (Arabic. Levant News, 9/5/06). Muhammad Mahfoud was released on bail to await trial, making him the fifth BDD detainee to be released at the time. The other four were released in mid-July. Although the lawyers of the remaining five detainees had appealed for the release of their clients, which include Michel Kilo and Anwar Bunni, their request was rejected. The BDD had asked the Syrian regime to recognize and respect Lebanon's sovereignty and independence, and to demarcate the common borders and exchange embassies.
9/9 - The Committees for the Defence of Human Rights and Democratic Freedoms in Syria (CDF) issued a statement denouncing the maltreatment of prisoner of opinion Habib Saleh, noting that he is being deprived the most basic rights afforded to prisoners. (Arabic. Elaph, 9/9/06). The statement said that Saleh is deprived of vists, except from his wife and daughter. He is not allowed to see his lawyer, or to read the papers or watch TV or listen to the radio. He is also deprived from daily recreation and is under a "prison siege" whereby inmates are forbidden from talking to him. His physical and emotional states are said to be deteriorating (he suffers from several chronic illnesses).
Saleh is a former Damascus Spring detainee who was jailed for three years on 9/12/01. He was again arrested by military intelligence on 5/30/05 and charged with spreading false and exaggerated news. He had been publishing scathing articles on the web, criticizing the Syrian president and his family and some of the symbols of the regime. On August 15 he was given the maximum sentence of three years in prison.