When Syrian men and women peacefully took to the street in early 2011 to demand democratic reforms, they were met with escalating repression, including arbitrary detention, disappearance and torture. Over four years, more than 200,000 people are estimated have been detained by government forces, including thousands of women. Accurate numbers are difficult to pin down as the Syrian government denies access to detention sites to independent monitors. Documentation efforts by Syrian human rights groups indicate that several thousands of women have been detained, while hundreds remain in captivity, often without any contact with the outside world.
The Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) and the Syrian Center for Statistic and Research (SCSR) estimate that more than 2850 women remain detained by Syrian security forces across the country, including at least 120 girls under the age of 18. The Violations Documentation Center in Syria (VDC) documented around 1800 cases of women arbitrarily detained, including 69 girls under the age of 18. The three groups corroborated that at least 19 women were killed under torture in detention, including girls under the age of 18. (March 2011 until 31st January 2015).