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They are told only minutes before that they are going to die.

"Death sentences are approved by the Grand Mufti of Syria and by either the Minister of Defense or the Chief of Staff of the Army, who are deputized to act on behalf of President Bashar Assad", said the report. "We didn't think about what we were doing - we just reached the state of barbarity, and entered it, not even thinking", said Wael, a detainee in Saydnaya from 2012 to 2014. "There is therefore no reason to believe that executions have stopped", according to Amnesty International. Its findings were based on result of a year-long investigation, including interviews with 84 people, including ex-inmates at the prison, lawyers, prison guards and officials at two key buildings, a "red building" in which civilian detainees were held and a "white building" that held former military members and where hangings were carried out in the basement.

Amnesty International have monitored the mass graves growing and compiled witness accounts of the atrocities taking place at Saydnaya Prison. "This was normal for me then".

The report also contains details of what it calls the "sadistic and dehumanizing" conditions under which the prisoners are kept, including repeated torture and the systematic deprivation of food, water and medical care.

The report said the detainees were never given a fair trial.

Also previous year, United Nations human rights experts said witness accounts and other evidence strongly suggested that tens of thousands of people were being detained and that "deaths on a massive scale" were occurring in custody.

"Mainly all prisoners inside Saydnaya are political prisoners and a lot of them were peaceful protestors".

"One former military officer said he could hear "gurgling" as people were hanged in an execution room below", Al Jazeera reports. Following the executions, the prisoners' bodies were taken to Tishreen military hospital where they were registered as having died of natural causes. Some, so malnourished that their weight was too light to kill them, were pulled down by two officers' assistants so as to break their necks, said the report.

To this day, "detainees are still being transferred to Saydnaya, and "trials" at the Military Field Court in al-Qaboun continue".

Former detainee Omar al-Shogre before his arrest and shortly after his release from Saydnaya Prison in Syria.

Torture and beatings were regularly meted out by the guards, and the floors of the cells were coated with blood and pus from the victims' wounds.

Speaking in an interview from Stockholm via Skype, Alshogre described how he was forced to keep his eyes closed and his back to the guards while they abused or suffocated a cellmate.

Every week, often twice per week, between 20 and 50 people are taken from their cells to be hanged, in the middle of the night, says AI, adding that as many as 13,000 people have been killed in Saydnaya since 2011, in utmost secrecy, between September 2011 and December 2015.

"Russia and Iran, the government's closest allies, must press for an end to these murderous detention policies".

More than 300,000 people have been killed and 11 million others displaced since an uprising against the government regime, who are now supported by Russian Federation in their own fight against rebels and ISIS.


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