Monday, June 6, 2011

Lesbian Blogger in Syria Goes Missing

The Syrian lesbian journalist whose blog has made her an unlikely hero of the Syrian uprising has reportedly been arrested.

According to new posts that appeared today on her blog "A Gay Girl In Damascus," the current whereabouts of regular author Amina Abdullah are unknown.
A writer identifying themselves as Rania O. Ismail, Abdullah's cousin, writes the following on June 6th:

Dear friends of Amina,
I am Amina Abdallah Araf al Omari’s cousin and have the following information to share.
Earlier today, at approximately 6:00 pm Damascus time, Amina was walking in the area of the Abbasid bus station, near Fares al Khouri Street. She had gone to meet a person involved with the Local Coordinating Committee and was accompanied by a friend.
Amina told the friend that she would go ahead and they were separated.Amina had, apparently, identified the person she was to meet. However, while her companion was still close by, Amina was seized by three men in their early 20’s. According to the witness (who does not want her identity known), the men were armed. Amina hit one of them and told the friend to go find her father.
One of the men then put his hand over Amina’s mouth and they hustled her into a red Dacia Logan with a window sticker of Basel Assad. The witness did not get the tag number. She promptly went and found Amina’s father.
The men are assumed to be members of one of the security services or the Baath Party militia. Amina’s present location is unknown and it is unclear if she is in a jail or being held elsewhere in Damascus.
I have just spoken with her father who is trying to locate her. He has asked me to share this information with her contacts in the hope that someone may know her whereabouts and so that she might be shortly released.
If she is now in custody, he is not worried about being in hiding and says he will do anything he can to free her. If anyone knows anything as to her whereabouts, please contact Abdallah al Omari at his home or please email me, Rania Ismail, at onepathtogod at gmail dot com.
We are hoping she is simply in jail and nothing worse has happened to her.Amina had previously sent me several texts to post should something happen to her and we will wait until we have definite word before doing so.
Salamat,
Rania O. Ismail

Update on Amina

I have been on the telephone with both her parents and all that we can say right now is that she is missing. Her father is desperately trying to find out where she is and who has taken her.

Unfortunately, there are at least 18 different police formations in Syria as well as multiple different party militias and gangs. We do not know who took her so we do not know who to ask to get her back. It is possible that they are forcibly deporting her.

From other family members who have been imprisoned there, we believe that she is likely to be released fairly soon. If they wanted to kill her, they would have done so.

That is what we are all praying for.

I will post any updates as soon as I have them.
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1 comment:

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