About Yahya Shurbaji:
Born 1979, Yahya Shurbaji is a 32-year-old nonviolence visionary. He was part of the original Daraya Youth group which devoted itself to studying nonviolence and to civic projects in the community, and which had to disband in 2003 when eighteen of its members were imprisoned. Yahya emerged from his two-and-a-half year prison sentence as a compassionate, down-to-earth community leader.
When the Syrian revolution began in March 2011, Yahya became known as “the man with the roses” because he promoted the giving of roses, at every Daraya rally, to soldiers sent to suppress the protesters. He won hearts to the way of nonviolence by his insistance that the protesters must not even shout insults at the regime forces.
Yahya was imprisoned on September 6, 2011, in a trap set by Air Force Security – the same trap in which Ghiyath Matar was captured. Ghiyath’s tortured body was returned to his family 3 days later. Yahya’s brother, Maan Shurbaji, and two other men were also captured in that operation. As a young leader of protesters, Yahya is at risk of torture.
1. Join Yahya’s support page on Facebook. The “Info” category is in English as well as Arabic.
2. Write for Yahya Shurbaji:
Please use the below sample letter to demand the immediate and unconditional release of Yahya Shurbaji. The mail should be addressed to the Syrian Embassy in Washington DC, with copies to international foreign ministries worldwide as well as media outlets. Addresses appear below the sample letter.
To the relevant authorities:
I am writing to demand the immediate and unconditional release of nonviolence activist Yahya Shurbaji from detention in Syria’s security system.
Yahya Shurbaji, age 32, was detained on September 6, 2011 by Air Force Security. He is arbitrarily detained. Arbitrary detention is illegal according to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, Article 7. Syria signed this Covenant on 21 April, 1969.
In addition, torture is illegal in Syria, both under international law as well as according to Article 28 (3) of the Syrian Constitution. The Penal Code of Syria stipulates punishment for anyone inflicting torture on a person. Syria’s security system is thus responsible for the safety and well-being of Yahya Shurbaji. I hold the Syrian government responsible for the safe return of Mr. Shurbaji, and for all prisoners of conscience and political prisoners currently held in Syria’s detention and prison system. All such detainees should be released immediately and without condition.
ADDRESSES (copy & paste into your email address line):
To (Syrian Embassy in Washington DC): email@example.com
cc (Foreign Ministries worldwide): firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, DNZPC.Sekretariat@msz.gov.pl, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
cc (various media outlets): firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, Bruce.Wallace@latimes.com, Mark.McGonigle@latimes.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
* Photo and biography of Yahya Shurbaji provided by Dr. Mohja Kahf.