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British surgeon murdered in syrian jail

(22 Posts)
defuse Sun 22-Dec-13 00:04:26


Feel so angry about this. 13 months in jail, mother had to track him down. William Hague was sent letters but there was no response. The british government should have done much more. sad

EdithWeston Sun 22-Dec-13 05:05:17

The mother, as a private individual, was able to travel to Syria.

The UK had severed diplomatic relations with Syria, so British diplomats and consular officials could not.

Does this mean UK was wrong to cut off diplomatic relations? And does it mean there is actually a new level of support for British diplomatic representation overseas? Usually it's on the receiving end of bashing and demands it be cut (as it's seen as a luxury, not an essential). Perhaps this will be a turning point?

EdithWeston Sun 22-Dec-13 05:06:35

And in case I've missed something important - what exactly is the "more" that should be done?

littleducks Sun 22-Dec-13 06:36:07

I can't believe this got so little coverage whilst he was alive. It was in our local paper, but didn't make it to the national papers or news in any big way.

Onesleeptillwembley Sun 22-Dec-13 06:47:40

Sad, but he chose to take that risk. I accept its a very strong possibility, but is there proof he was murdred?

Farahilda Sun 22-Dec-13 06:55:53

I don't think anyone knows what happened to him.

Was there an outcry against Britain severing diplomatic relations with Assad? Aslittleducks points out, there wasn't much coverage earlier; and ending the official links obviously has a huge impact on Brits in the country - whatever they've been accused (or 'accused') of.

Because from that point onwards - and even more so back in 2012 when we recognised the National Coalition as representative of the Syrian people, and of we're bombing the country - that there could be no British officials in the country.

claig Sun 22-Dec-13 14:36:37

littleducks, Channel 4 News gave it quite a lot of coverage over several months if I remember it correctly

NiceTabard Sun 22-Dec-13 17:49:25

This case has also been featured on newsnight.

Just so utterly appallingly sad and the condition he was in it's just terrible. I feel so much for his family.

Skogkat Sun 22-Dec-13 18:00:05

So sad. That poor family. A seven year old daughter sad

3littlefrogs Sun 22-Dec-13 18:12:19

This is so, so sad. That poor man was supposed to be home this weekend.

What a terrible waste and a tragedy for his family.

I don't know what the government could have done though.

He went there to try and help people and he took a big risk. But it wasn't the British government that killed him. I wonder if we will ever find out what happened?

defuse Sun 22-Dec-13 21:43:10

Not saying that our government killed him. That accusation lies firmly at syrian government's door.

The czech embassy had to represent the british diplomacy angle. The family had to keep explaining to officials from here and abroad that their brother was not a jihadi. They had to keep 'clarifying' his character and career history. Not just british officials - all of them. It is sad how every asian young man is deemed a terrorist until proven otherwise.

Abbas khan was moved from a civilian prison to another one just 2 days before his due release and he is found dead. That not sound suspicious?

I dont know the ins and out of diplomacy. What i want to know is that could more have been done to help his family secure his release.

mercibucket Sun 22-Dec-13 21:51:25

tragic loss of a young educated father who died using his training, helping the injured

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 23-Dec-13 06:43:13

It's a tragic and appalling case but the reason the Foreign Office advises British nationals not to travel to Syria is precisely because it is a lawless and dangerous place where we have zero diplomatic influence as a state. There are hundreds of British nationals out there at the moment, some for humanitarian reasons but many of them idealistic young men engaged in fighting on the grounds of misguided religious duty. They are there entirely at their own risk.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advise against all travel to Syria. British nationals in Syria should leave now by any practical means. The FCO is not able to provide consular services, and won’t be able to help your evacuation from the country.

scottishmummy Mon 23-Dec-13 22:11:39

Gosh,I heard his sister and mum on radio it was heartbreaking
Heartfelt condolences to family at such sad time
I hope they get answers and closure

beatricequimby Mon 23-Dec-13 22:21:21

This is incredibly sad. I don't know whether our Government could have done anymore or not. But the coverage in the Guardian gave the impression that the family had to keep justifying themselves because they are Asian, so the assumption was being made that he must have been an Islamic extremist. Same way as the police thought Steven Lawrence must have been a gang member because he was black.

fuzzywuzzy Mon 23-Dec-13 22:26:46

The Syrian regime is targetting Doctors and hospitals, doctors are bieng warned specifically to flee or they will be murdered.

I sincerely hope Bashar ends up in desperate need of highly qualified medics.

defuse Mon 23-Dec-13 23:31:18

I read some crazy statistic that there were 2000 doctors (with a convoy)and now there are just 35. sad

BoreOfWhabylon Thu 26-Dec-13 16:45:17

Like scottishmummy, I heard his mother and sister being interviewed. Heartbreaking.
His funeral was today.
RIP Dr Khan.

3littlefrogs Fri 27-Dec-13 11:27:26

The inquest into his death is opening now, I think.

His poor family, I keep thinking about them looking forward to having him home for Christmas. sad

noddyholder Fri 27-Dec-13 11:32:08

I think there will be strikes in Syria this year using this as an excuse

TheDietStartsTomorrow Fri 27-Dec-13 15:26:29

He went there to try and help people and he took a big risk.

He took a risk because that he was fulfilling a moral duty as a doctor and to use his training and abilities to help those who were truly in need of it. You can't blame him for that. It was an act of bravery and selflessness. I hope that when my time comes too, I can also end my life doing something meaningful and making a difference in the lives of those in need.

His family sounded distraught. My heart goes out to them.

Cosmos123 Fri 27-Dec-13 19:31:30

How absolutely tragic that a young British surgeon trying to provide humanitarian support has had his life taken in the most despicable matter.

A huge loss to the medical profession and and a greater incomprehensible loss to his dear family.

Thank you for all your hard word Dr Abbas Khan. Rest in peace.

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