Report: Syrian activist assaulted in jail

November 5, 2010 14:04


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DAMASCUS, Syria — Several human rights groups on Thursday said a prominent Syrian lawyer has been assaulted in prison.

Muhannad al-Hassani is serving a three-year sentence for spreading false information and "weakening national sentiments" — a term often used in Syria against those who challenge the regime. Al-Hassani had handled cases of political prisoners.

Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and several other groups said on Thursday that another prisoner assaulted al-Hassani on Oct. 28. They urged the government to protect him and investigate the attack.

There was no immediate word on his condition.

In May, 10 human rights groups awarded al-Hassani their annual prize for bravery, the Martin Ennals Award.

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