News | Syria
Syria’s airforce intelligence service refused to comply with a judge’s request to produce Mazen Darwish, the head of the Syrian Centre for Media and Freedom of Expression (SCM), in court on August 6, 2012, at a hearing for those arrested during a raid on the centre’s Damascus headquarters on February 16.
In a letter to the court, the airforce intelligence service simply said that the SCM had been operating without permission.
Darwish, of whom there has been no news since his arrest, will therefore be tried by a special military court that holds its hearings behind closed doors at military police headquarters in the northeastern Damascus district of Qabon. It does not allow defendants to be represented by a lawyer, its proceedings are completely secret and its sentences are carried out immediately.
The judge presiding the August 6 hearing also rejected requests by lawyers to defend the eight other defendants - Yara Badr, Razan Ghazzawi, Mayada Khalil, Sana Zetani, Hussein Gharir, Hani Zetani, Mansour Al-Omari and Abdel Rahman Hamada - and adjourned the case until August 29.
The last four - Hussein Gharir, Hani Zetani, Mansour Al-Omari and Abdel Rahman Hamada - are, like Darwish, being held incommunicado. Reporters