Survivors of torture actions to end impunity, 3.2.12:  TASSC (Torture Abolition and Survivors Support Coalition International) has been working to end torture in countries where this inhuman and barbaric action is practiced. Over the years this organization has travelled a long distance to create awareness and mobilize people to voice against torture. Through efforts of survivors of torture from all over the world, it has managed to score a lot of meaningful results. In recent time, there was big victory attained with regard to actions to end impunity. Accordingly, General Mohamad Ali Samantar, the right-hand man of the Somalian dictator, Siad Barre was on trial, in Alexandria, VA for war-crimes charges. He has now been judged liable for these crimes and survivors are awating the judge’s decision regarding damages.

The hearing marked the first time that anyone has been held accountable for the atrocities of the brutal Siad Barre regime, which ruled Somalia in the late 1980s and was eventually overthrown. This left chaos and instability that peristed to this day. In addition to testimony from the victims who brought the suit, the judge heard from a U.S. military official about the breadth of the war crimes that were committed under Samantar’s command. Also testifying via video hook-up was a witness who talked about digging mass graves and a BBC reporter who interviewed Samantar, winning an admission that he had ordered his forces to carpet-bomb an area politically opposed to the regime. Samantar had previously maintained that the BBC interview was a fake. A final decision on damages is expected from Judge Brinkema soon.