The man, a resident of Adra who wants to remain anonymous, sat down with the news agency's Arabic affiliate. He recalled that the whole ordeal began when he woke up one morning, not knowing that armed Islamist militants had entered his town. Getting a call from his neighbor, he looked out his window, and saw a group of bearded men in strange clothes.
"We were taken to the at-Tawba prison in Duma," he recalled. "As soon as we arrived, each prisoner was given a serial number. And then we were taken to work – we dug trenches and underground tunnels."
Prisoners, the young man recalled, were not given the necessary sustenance, and were only allowed to use the toilet twice a day, once in the morning and in the evening. "We were fed once a day. The food was rotten – it was impossible to eat it. They gave us whatever they wouldn't eat themselves. From hunger we ate everything. We wanted to stay alive — to wake up the next morning…" the former prisoner said.
Torture was applied even against women. According to the eyewitness, the rebels took the women into a makeshift torture room, and from there prisoners throughout the prison could hear screams.
"I tried to escape several times, but nothing worked," the prisoner noted. "Finally, I managed to escape, in the dead of night. I ran to the side controlled by Syrian forces."
On May 11, the United States, Britain, France and Ukraine rejected a Russian initiative in the United Nations Security Council to classify the Jaish al-Islam and Ahrar al-Sham militant groups as terrorist organizations.