Syria Stands Behind Detaining of British Doctor who Died

On Wednesday, Syria announced that a doctor from Britain alleged to have been murdered while in custody had actually committed suicide by hanging himself after he was arrested for carrying out unauthorized activities.

Abbas Khan the British doctor died while in custody only days before he was scheduled to be handed back to a British lawmaker. His death has caused furor in London, which accused the regime of President Bashar al-Assad of murdering the surgeon who was just 32.

However, SANA the Syria state news agency said on Wednesday that Dr. Khan had entered the territory of Syria illegally and participated in activities that were unauthorized.

The Agency cited a report from the medical examiner that said the doctor’s death was by hanging and committed by a person with the aim of ending his life. The agency added that the report said examination of the body showed no signs of resistance of violence.

Faisal Mekdad, the Deputy Foreign Minister of Syria said Tuesday Kahn had used his pajamas to hang himself.

Khan was a volunteer for Human Aid UK a London-based aid group. He traveled to Aleppo in 2012 to give help to civilians there but the regime captured him there.

On Tuesday, his family released word that he died while in detention. He was supposed to have been released by Syria this week.

Shahnawax, Khan’s brother, said the regime offered on Wednesday to have an independent autopsy performed, which he called insulting.

Human Aid UK announced that Khan committing suicide was incomprehensible only a few days prior to his scheduled return to freedom.

The regime in Syria has been accused numerous times of torturing as well as killing numbers of prisoners during the three-year civil war, in which it is estimated 125,000 people have died.

Medics, activists and other witnesses across the country said that they had documented hundreds of cases that the regime has said that prisoners had committed suicide when they were tortured and died.

Sunday saw 76 killed in one of the highest daily death tolls. Among the dead were an estimated 28 children.

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