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Syria - Universal Periodic Review - Death Penalty - July 2021

Date: July 15, 2021
Document: Syria UPR Death Penalty
Country: Syrian Arab Republic
Type: Intl Mechanism Submission
Issues: Death Penalty
Mechanism: Universal Periodic Review
Report Type: Stakeholder Report

  1. This report addresses the death penalty in the Syrian Arab Republic and Syria's compliance with human rights obligations with regard to death penalty practices and related issues. Unlike many other countries, Syria's penal code allows for the application of the death penalty even absent an intentional killing. The death penalty is mandatory for certain offenses including recidivist drug trafficking and membership in the Moslem Brethren Group (also known as the Muslim Brotherhood Organization) The death penalty is available to punish political dissent. Given the ongoing conflict within the country, it is difficult to obtain reliable data about the imposition of death sentences and about executions. There are reports of thousands of people arbitrarily detained and under sentence of death within Syria's prisons. Additionally, people are subjected to life-threatening prison conditions as well as torture to coerce confessions, particularly in response to accusations of anti-regime activities.
  2. This report recommends that Syria abolish the death penalty, ratify relevant human rights treaties, amend laws to criminalize and punish torture, adopt a zero-tolerance policy regarding torture, improve prison conditions, publicize investigations of deaths resulting from torture in prison, and increase transparency in death penalty-related cases, including public reporting of sentencing, general prison conditions, and treatment of people on death row in particular.