Thursday, October 19, 2006
Syrian political prisoners freed
In the last few weeks several high profile political prisoners have been set free, including Michel Kilo today. At least the government seems to be relenting under pressure from Amnesty International and perhaps also Syrian expatriates (see freesyria.wordpress.com). There are still many prisoners of conscience whose families are not permitted to see them and whose fate is unknown. Judging by past behaviour, the regime likes to play cat and mouse games with dissidents. The low profile ones languish in jail without trial and at the rulers' whim and pleasure. The higher profile ones are "taught a lesson" then set free with the expectation that they will tone down their cristicisms or emigrate before they are re-arrested. Let's hope the prisoners release is the result of an enlightened policy change rather than the usual antics.