Sayel Asaad Daoud
Place of birth: Rabah, Homs Province
Current service position
In-charge of the National Defense Militias
Previous positions of service
1- National Defense Militias 2012
2- Deputy Head of Air Force Intelligence Branch 2011
At the outbreak of peaceful protests in March 2011, Brigadier-General Sayel Daoud was the deputy head of the Air Force Intelligence (AFI) Branch in the Central Region. Here he was assigned the task of leading the AFI in most of the incursions it carried out into the neighborhoods of Homs and its countryside, including the cities of Rastan, Talkalakh, al-Houleh, and al-Qsseir.
Daoud is directly responsible for the arrest and subsequent torture of a large number of people in the province of Homs, as well as the fabrication of false charges against a number of detainees, charging them with illegal demonstration or offending the country leaders.
He was tasked with the mission of forming the National Defense Forces (NDF) militia towards the end of 2011 and overeing the Office for Recruitment and Armament in the Baath Party’s National Security Bureau in Homs. During his time here, Daoud supervised the formation and arming of militias, and established coordination between the security services and the army for the deployment of civilian volunteers into combat.
According to information obtained by Pro-Justice, Daoud is known to have helped orchestrate a number of high-profile massacres, including:
- The Clock Square Massacre (Homs, 17/4/2011), which led to the killing of some 500 people after security services opened fire on a mass sit-in in the city’s main square. Around 100,000 protesters had gathered in the area before vehicles carrying armed forces arrived and fired on the demonstrators for 30-40 minutes. Syrian authorities removed the dead and wounded from the site by bulldozer and are believed to have buried them in mass graves.
- The Bab Dreib massacre (Homs, 7/9/2011), in which 26 people were killed when tanks shelled the neighborhood.
- The Al-Khalidiya neighborhood massacre (Homs, 4/2/2012), in which 342 people were killed when security forces shelled the neighborhood with tanks and mortars.
- The Karam al-Zaitoun neighborhood massacre (Homs, 4/12/2011), in which 25 people were killed when regime forces stormed the district.
- The Al-Liwaa Bakery massacre (Homs, 16/1/2012), in which 60 people were killed in the Asheera neighborhood when shooters targeted civilians in breadlines.
- The Baba Amr neighborhood massacre (Homs, 8/2/2012), which resulted in the death of more than 100 people and the destruction of around 80 percent of the district when regime forces shelled the area with artillery and other munitions.
- The Al-Bayadah neighborhood massacre (Homs, 10/2/2012), in which security forces slaughtered 30 people, mostly women and children.
- A second massacre in the Baba Amr neighborhood (Homs, 7/3/2012), which resulted in the deaths of 20 people, including 13 members of one family, five of which were children, after security forces stormed the district.
- A second massacre in the Asheera neighborhood (Homs, 9/3/2012), in which 224 people were killed after the district was shelled for 18 hours continuously. Days later, on 11 March 2012, hundreds of shabeeha militants stormed the district, carrying out field executions, arresting dozens of local children, raping girls, and slaughtering many of their victims.
- The massacres in the neighborhoods of Karam al-Zaytoun, al-Adawiya and al-Rifa’i (Homs, 12/3/2012), which resulted in the deaths of 144 people, including 28 children and 23 women, when the areas were bombarded with mortar and artillery shelling. Security forces later stormed the quarter and arrested dozens of locals, separating men from women, raping women and girls, and slaughtering children.