1.2 In accordance with article 22, paragraph 3, of the Convention, the
Committee transmitted the communication to the State party on 12
March 1999. At the same time the State party was requested, pursuant
to rule 108, paragraph 9, of the Committee's rules of procedure, not to
expel the author to the Syrian Arab Republic while his
communication was under consideration by the Committee. In a
submission dated 12 May 1999 the State party informed the
Committee that steps had been taken to ensure that the author was not
returned to the Syrian Arab Republic while his case was pending
before the Committee.
The facts as submitted by the author
2.1 The author claims that he has been a member of the Kurdistan
Democratic Party in Iraq (KDP-Iraq) (1) since 1980. As such, he
allegedly participated in various activities of that organization, chiefly
by transporting funds to support Kurds in Iraq and by distributing
pamphlets deploring the situation of the Syrian Kurds, who had been
stripped of their nationality by the Syrian State.
2.2 The author claims that he was twice arrested by the Syrian
security forces. The first time, during the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, he
was in possession of funds intended for Iraq. He was freed after 18
days, only after a large sum of money had been paid by his family for
his release. The second arrest reportedly took place in 1993. On that
occasion, the author was held for 96 days in Mezze prison near
Damascus and was reportedly tortured. He was released only after
swearing to forgo any political activities in the future. His family
again paid approximately 6,000 United States dollars to secure his
2.3 Subsequently, however, the author continued his political
activities. In March 1995 he was warned by a family member who
had reportedly received information from the security services that he
was going to be arrested once again. The author then decided to flee
the country and crossed the border into Lebanon illegally. He left
Lebanon by boat in March, but it is not clear when he arrived in
Europe. Nevertheless, on 10 April 1995 he applied for political
asylum in Switzerland, largely on the basis of his alleged persecution
in the Syrian Arab Republic.
2.4 The author's request for asylum was turned down on 28 May 1996
by the Federal Office for Refugees as being implausible, and 15
August 1996 was set as the deadline for the author's departure from
Swiss territory. Subsequently the author appealed against that

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