December 12, 2012 | By Parker Higgins

Open Source Developer Bassel Khartabil Moved to Syrian Military Prison

EFF has been calling since July for the immediate release of open source software engineer and Creative Commons volunteer Bassel Khartabil, detained in Syria since March of this year. Many other groups and thousands of individuals have professed support for Bassel, expressing deep concerns to the Syrian authorities and signing onto a letter of support.

Unfortunately, his situation may have taken a turn for the worse recently., a news source run by a coalition of his friends and supporters, is reporting he has been transferred to a military prison where he will be denied a lawyer. Needless to say, this development is both dangerous and worthy of urgent attention.

As we said in an October letter to Syrian officials:

EFF urges the people detaining Kartabil to grant him immediate access to his family, a lawyer of his choice, and all necessary medical treatment. We urge you to protect him from torture and other ill-treatment. Additionally, we call on you to release Khartabil, unless he is promptly charged with an internationally recognizable criminal offence and tried in proceedings that respect international fair trial standards.

EFF renews that commitment, alongside Amnesty International, Creative Commons, and Mozilla, to urging those responsible for detaining Bassel to release him.

Members of our community can find updates about Bassel's situation searching for the #freebassel hashtag, and can support the call for his release by joining the letter of support at

Deeplinks Topics

Stay in Touch

NSA Spying

EFF is leading the fight against the NSA's illegal mass surveillance program. Learn more about what the program is, how it works, and what you can do.

Follow EFF

San Diego County has doubled the number of facial recognition devices officers use in the field since 2013:

Nov 25 @ 1:30pm

We are more secure when we have better locks. It's nonsense for FBI to suggest the opposite.

Nov 25 @ 12:50pm

Free software on routers can be more powerful and secure. Fortunately, FCC has clarified this rule won't target it.

Nov 25 @ 12:17pm
JavaScript license information