European countries
Good governance and rule of law

Alaa M., a former Syrian doctor who workers in Germany, is on trial from Wednesday 19 January in Frankfurt for “crimes against humanity.” The Federal Prosecutor’s Office initiated the proceedings in accordance with the legal principle of Germany’s universal jurisdiction, which led last week to the life sentence of a former Syrian officer in another trial.

Arrested in June 2020 in Hesse (western Germany), Alaa M. is accused of having tortured 18 prisoners and killed at least one opponent of Bashar al-Assad. The events allegedly took place in two military hospitals in Homs, in central Syria, and in Damascus. The doctor, who denied the charges, is also said to have been in a Syrian military intelligence prison between April 2011 and late 2012 in Homs.

It is worth noting that the accused left Syria in mid-2015 for Germany thanks to a visa issued by Germany to Syrians working in certain professions in short supply, including medicine.