[Marxism] Fwd: Louay Hussein, mainstay of Syria opposition, flees to Turkey - FT.com

Jeff meisner at xs4all.nl
Thu Apr 30 05:53:49 MDT 2015


>http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/4a223334-eda8-11e4-987e-00144feab7de.html

This was behind a paywall, but I found the corresponding report on BBC. The
Financial Times headline repeated in the subject line may have been a bit
misleading. He was among the legal "non-violent" opposition still tolerated
by the regime, but as the article mentions he was still facing prosecution
and felt in danger (presumably that he would be convicted of the
thought-crime and imprisoned; he fled right before the verdict was to be
announced). He had been prepared to attend the (pointless) talks in Moscow
earlier this month, but the regime wouldn't even allow him to travel that
far. So I suspect he figured they were preparing to imprison him and got
out just in time. Things are really coming to a head in Syria, which this
person's departure may be a further sign of.
- Jeff 


http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-32479269

Syrian dissident Louay Hussein flees to Spain
27 April 2015

A prominent Syrian political activist has evaded a travel ban and fled to
Spain before the end of his trial for "weakening national sentiment".

Louay Hussein, head of the Building the Syrian State (BSS) party, said he
had felt that his life was in danger.

The 55-year-old was a leading member of Syria's internal opposition, which
is largely tolerated by the government.

But he was detained last year after writing a newspaper article that was
critical of President Bashar al-Assad.

In February, he was released on bail and banned from leaving the country.


'Difficult journey'

Mr Hussein arrived in Spain on Sunday after what he called "a difficult
journey".

The deputy leader of the BSS, Anas Judeh, said he had flown from Damascus
to the north-eastern city of Qamishli before heading to the nearby town of
Ras al-Ain and crossing the border with Turkey.

"It's no longer possible to come to an understanding with the regime, which
is turning into a militia," Mr Hussein told the AFP news agency.

He will travel to Istanbul in the coming days to meet members of Syria's
exiled opposition, including the Western-backed National Coalition.

In a post on Facebook, he wrote that he hoped to "agree on a roadmap to
save the country from the regime, the extremist Islamic State group, and
the [al-Qaeda-affiliated] al-Nusra Front".

He was put on trial in February on charges of "weakening national
sentiment" and "weakening the morale of the nation".

The charges arose from an opinion piece he wrote for the pan-Arab newspaper
al-Hayat in June 2014, entitled Syrians Do Not Feel They Need A State.

In the article, Mr Hussein criticised the governments of Mr Assad and his
late father, Hafez, arguing that they had "turned state institutions into
agencies to oppress citizens". He also warned that a "national identity
crisis" meant the Syrian state was in danger of collapsing.

Mr Hussein was detained at the beginning of the uprising against Mr Assad
in March 2011, and also spent several years in prison without trial in the
1980s.

In a separate development on Monday, rebels took over a military base in
the north-western province of Idlib.

The capture of al-Qarmid camp is the latest success for the rebels in
Idlib, where they have now driven government forces out of the provincial
capital and main towns.

At the weekend, a rebel alliance calling itself the Army of Victory - which
includes jihadists from al-Nusra Front - seized Jisr al-Shughour.

Government forces responded by launching air strikes on the town and other
targets in Idlib, killing more than 70 civilians, activists said.



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