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Syrian Court Acquits Human Rights Activist


A Syrian court has acquitted a leading human rights activist of various accusations of anti-government activity, dropping all charges against him.

The State Security Court said Sunday Aktham Naisse, chairman of the Committees for the Defense of Democratic Liberties and Human Rights in Syria, was exonerated of all charges.

Mr. Naisse was arrested in April, 2004 on charges of spreading false information, forming an underground group, having links to international human rights organizations and other charges related to opposing the ruling Baath Party.

He was released on bail after spending nearly five months in jail for publishing a report on human rights in Syria and urging an end to 40 years of emergency rule that has stifled political life in the country.

A spokesman for the Arab Human Rights Organization welcomed the verdict and expressed hope that other political prisoners would be released soon.

Some information for this story provided by Reuters and AP.

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