Research on Syria

Research on Syria


Torture has been a prevailing method of solving problems in Syria for many years. The country has been using its security forces to oppress the civilians who have been detained in prisons due to minor wrongdoings. Along with torture, the Syrian regime has been enforcing disappearances and other crimes against humanity. These acts have led to many deaths especially among those detained in prison facilities. This paper looks into the problem of torture in Syria, how it has is administered, how it has affected individuals and its implications on the economy of the Middle East. By analyzing the issue of torture in Syria possible solutions of tackling the problem can be enforced and save the lives of many suffering civilians.


Over many years Syria has been practicing torture and ill treatment a way to problem solving which has been facilitated by enforced disappearances, detention and arbitrary arrest. Researchers have concluded that approximately 12, 679 individuals were killed due to torture between 2011 and 2016 with 99 % being at perpetrated by the Syrian regime forces (Kaleck & Kroker, 2018). They used torture as a way of threatening the wrong doers and spreading ramous among the rest of the people. Syria has gone to the extent of having detention and torture prisons where the wrongdoers are punished. Torture is administered to the detainees in various ways including being beaten regularly, shocked with electricity, beaten while crammed inside tires and being sexually assaulted (Idris, 2017). Despite, torture as form of punishment being declared illegal worldwide, some countries still practice it without considering its effects.

Investigating the problem of torture in Syria is important since it presents a comprehensive information of how the people have been suffering due to this kind of problem solving method. The United Nations Committee against Torture expressed a deep concern due to the consistent, documented, credible and collaborated contentions on the existence of systematic ill-treatment and torture in Syria (Valutytė, 2017). The government of Syria as well as affiliated militias has been practicing torture against civilians with women and children being affected most due to the outcomes of torture. Those who are arrested are often tortured immediately upon arrest and during their early days of arrest and detention. Due to this, the victims suffer the outcomes of torture including depression, suicides, stress, physical harm and Post Traumatic Disorders (Idris, 2017). The problem of torture in Syria is devastating and the world needs a firsthand record of the al-Assad regime atrocities against the Syrians. Thus, the main purpose of this research is therefore to investigate the torture, its effects, how and why it has persisted in Syria and finds the possible solutions to this in humane act.

Literature Review

The outcomes of torture as a method of punishing the wrongdoers in Syria have led to several deaths especially in torture detention facilities. In the past few years, many individuals have died in the detention facilities that are controlled by the notorious Syrian government security agencies know as Mukhabarat (Ismail, 2018). According to 2017 human rights report, there are about 27 torture detentions in Syria with most of them being found in the capital Damascus. Despite the scale of deaths and abuse in detention remaining unknown many released detainees and defectors indicated that torture and incommunicado detention were extensive and many detainees were dying (Idris, 2017). The causes of their deaths were most likely to be caused by trauma, starvation, violent blunt force and in other cases gunshot wounds.

For several generations, prisons in Syria have been symbols of violence and oppression. In most cases they are used to quiet political dissent, a way of killing dissidents and to sow fear. The Tadmor Prison is one example of torture facility that is found 130 miles northeast of Damascus (Ismail, 2018). During the French Mandate, Tadmor was constructed as an army barracks but it was later transformed and used for rendition, criminal imprisonment, executions and torture. Other torture prisons include the Sendaya, Adra, Aleppo, Mazza and Far’ Falastin. The prisons were secretive and notorious for abuse of human rights

Torture is a prevailing problem in Syria and many attempts by other governments to stop the problem have failed. As result of Syria’s political climate, most human rights groups cannot conduct their operations and do not have direct access to the conditions inside the prisons (Grover, 2016). Thus getting any information about what goes on in the prisons can be challenging with most humanitarians being arrested due to direct confrontation with the policies of Syria. Most humanitarian groups get information from testimonies of former guards and inmates.

Torture continues to be a widely used method of punishment in Syria routinely practiced by a number of security forces. The Air Force intelligence, presently led by Major Genareal Jamil Hassan is the most feared security force due to its ill-treatment and torture practices (Molnar, 2017). Individuals are particularly at risk of the security forces, torture and arbitrary detention if they protest or participate in any action against the authorities. Documentation of government violations as well as recording and dissemination of any information may also lead to arrest and eventually torture (Idris, 2017). Individuals found providing any medical assistance to protestor and people shot by the security forces were also arrest and at risk of such abuses. Humanitarians have reported the widespread of enforced disappearances, extrajudicial executions and other violations in Syria (Kaleck & Kroker, 2018). Thus, despite the many attempts of protestors to fight human rights, many have landed in the brutal hands of security forces.


The main purpose of current and previous literature is to provide an analysis of torture as a method of problem solving in Syria. The results of torture especially in the detention facilities are diverse and are mostly facilitated by the governments’ security forces. Researchers present a record of torture prisons and the techniques used to punish the detainees. The political climate of Syria has been unfavorable for researchers to find information with most of them ending up being arrested. Despite the citizens of Syria trying to fight for their rights through protests, many of them have ended up being the victims of torture and abuse as a result of their actions against the actions of the government.

Analysis I

It can be confirmed that torture has been a rife in Syria for many years and many have suffered as a result of this in humane act. According to Kaleck & Kroker (2018), the year 2011 witnessed a return of high levels of torture and violations of human. 38 types of torture have been reported with over 6500 people being killed every year and many more being injured. About 10, 000 people are believed to be arrested every year most of them being held incommunicado for longer periods, being detained arbitrary, ill-treated and tortured. Most of the detainees have been held in conditions that amount to their disappearances. Grover (2016) highlights that the deaths of those in custody has increased from a mean of fives cases per year to 300 cases per year. Since president Bashar al-Assad took power in 2001, certain torture techniques became a common. Some of the methods used to punish individuals upon their arrivals in the detention facilities include repeated and prolonged beatings with fists and other instruments such as electric cables, rifle butts and sticks (Teays, 2019). The beatings are often accompanied with verbal abuse and insults. More women and men are likely to be detained in cramped conditions with bathroom and toilet facilities being restricted. Food has been routinely described as of very poor quality and meager. Other methods of torture such as crucifixion and being hinged in a number of ways were also reported.

Analysis II

From testimonies of former detainees gathered by amnesty international, it is evident that torture is a prevailing problem that has had many effects on individuals in Syria. According to Amnesty international report, detainees reported several methods of torture including electric shocks, rape, exposure to excessive cold, being hanged by manacled wrists, beatings, pulling out of hair, being denied medical care, stubbing, threats and insults (Kaleck & Kroker, 2018). Syria’s brutality is major crime against humanity and yet more evidence of systematic violations is being reported. The international community and organizations have been constantly documenting the events of torture in Syria and tried to stop the problem but their attempts have been failing (Valutytė, 2017). From several interviews conducted, the government of Syria is taking no action towards ending the problem with those found participating in any form of demonstration being arrested. Many have been killed while others forced to disappear. This shows how the prevalence of torture in Syria is a major problem that has led to human rights violations as well as many deaths.

Conclusion I

It is clear that the effects of ill treatment have led to many deaths especially in detention facilities. However, the government of Syria is taking no actions to end the systematic use of torture as problem solving method. The outcomes of torture have led to a number of deaths, disappearances and mental problems. As humanitarians attempt to find out what is happening in Syria, many have ended up being arrested and detained in secretive prisons where different techniques of torture are administered. Those found protesting have also been victims of torture, with Syria’s security forces imposing more brutal actions towards individuals. The international community and organizations have tried to stop the problem of torture in Syria but all have failed or ended up conflicting with the government. The situation in Syria is devastating and several steps should be taken to end torture as a method of punishment in Syria.

Conclusion II

Due to many sanctions associated with ill-treatment and torture on the civilians, the Syrian government has had significant repercussions beyond the nation. Failing to present a new effective economic plan due to constant war, the Assad administration has maintained excessive public expenditure. The lack of trading networks has affected the country competiveness especially with other Middle East countries like Iraq and Iran. With the combination of profound challenges in its oil exports, deteriorating security indirect effects of the sanctions from the international community, the Syrian government has been facing unsustainable and indirect budget deficit. This is likely to affect the entre Middle East due to economic repercussions and the international financial institutions being reluctant to service the countries around the region. The Syrian government has diminished external trade and transfer of remittances from abroad which is likely to cause substantial inflation in the countries of Middle East. Furthermore, Syria’s sanctions have reduced the international confidence with the Middle East economy.


Grover, S. C. (2016). Torture of Children During Armed Conflicts. Springer-Verlag Berlin An.

Idris, I. (2017). International humanitarian law and human rights violations in Syria.

Ismail, S. (2018). The rule of violence: Subjectivity, memory and government in Syria(Vol. 50). Cambridge University Press.

Kaleck, W., & Kroker, P. (2018). Syrian Torture Investigations in Germany and Beyond: Breathing New Life into Universal Jurisdiction in Europe?. Journal of International Criminal Justice16(1), 165-191.

Molnar, P. (2017). Discretion to deport: intersections between health and detention of Syrian refugees in Jordan. Refuge: Canada’s Journal on Refugees/Refuge: revue canadienne sur les réfugiés33(2), 18-31.

Teays, W. (2019). Global Torture. In Doctors and Torture (pp. 41-53). Springer, Cham.

Valutytė, R. (2017). Insolvable Issued of Ineffective Individual Redress for Torture in Syria: Unavoidable and Inevitable. International Comparative Jurisprudence3(1), 55-66.



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