File - In this Thursday, Sept. 6, 2007 file photo, Syrian Vice President Farouk al-Sharaa talks to journalists during a joint press conference with Italian Premier Romano Prodi at Chigi palace, in Rome. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)
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A Spanish National Court judge Monday ordered an investigation into the alleged role of nine Syrian intelligence and security officials in the disappearance and execution of a man in 2013, in what is the first criminal case accepted by a foreign court against President Bashar Assad's regime.Investigative Magistrate Eloy Velasco said the nine could be charged with terrorism and forced disappearance under Spain's universal jurisdiction laws, although he sees evidence of torture, crimes against humanity and war crimes.Velasco is investigating it under the principle of universal jurisdiction, which in Spain allows prosecution of serious crimes in other countries if there is a Spanish victim.
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