A Syrian military court yesterday convicted the 19-year-old blogger Tal al-Malluhi of “spying for the USA”. Markus Löning, the Federal Government Commissioner for Human Rights Policy and Humanitarian Aid at the Federal Foreign Office, issued the following statement today (15 February):
“The judgment against blogger Tal Al-Malluhi is a serious setback for everyone who is working on behalf of democracy and freedom of opinion in Syria. It runs contrary to the Syrian Government’s allowance in recent days of access to banned Internet sites.
I call for the immediate release of Tal Al-Malluhi and all other political prisoners. The judgment is a step in the wrong direction, particularly in light of the upheaval in Tunisia and Egypt and the current calls for freedom and democracy in many countries of the region.
Syria is called upon to protect fundamental human and civil rights.”