Germany: Torture trial against suspected former Syrian officers continues in Koblenz

The trial of two suspected former members of Syrian secret service, accused of crimes against humanity for their alleged responsibility in the torture of detainees, continued in Koblenz on Thursday. Anwar R. is accused of crimes against humanity including murder, rape and sexual assault. Eyad A. is accused of aiding a crime against humanity. The indictment accuses Anwar R. of being responsible for the torture of at least 4,000 people in a high-ranking prison in Damascus, with at least 58 prisoners dying as a result. Eyad A. is accused of having brought at least 30 demonstrators to the torture prison. German prosecutors used universal jurisdiction laws to bring the defendants to court. The laws allow them to prosecute crimes against humanity committed anywhere in the world, even if neither the perpetrators or the victims are German. The Syrian government has denied allegations of torture and war crimes levied against it, and has made no mention of the trial in Koblenz, reports say.

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