UN investigators identify ‘alarming’ human rights violations
Syrian government forces have committed human rights violations, including executions, across the country “on an alarming scale” during military operations in the past three months, United Nations investigators have said.
Their report, presented yesterday by investigation head Paulo Pinheiro to the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, also listed multiple killings and kidnappings by armed opposition groups trying to topple president Bashar al-Assad. “The situation on the ground is dangerously and quickly deteriorating,” the 20-page report said. “In the increasingly militarised context, human rights violations are occurring across the country on an alarming scale during military operations against locations believed to be hosting defectors and/or those perceived as affiliated with anti-government armed groups, including the Free Syrian Army,” it said.
Syria’s ambassador dismissed the accusations and threatened to end co-operation with international agencies.
The UN investigators voiced concern that rebels were using children as medical porters, messengers and cooks, exposing them to risk of death and injury. Syria’s ambassador Faysal Khabbaz Hamoui took the floor in the debate to dismiss the accusations as being based on testimony from people fleeing justice and “tendentious media”.
The UN team said it had collected photographs, videos, satellite imagery and other documentary evidence during its recent investigative missions. It was updating its list of identified perpetrators for possible use in future criminal prosecutions for war crimes and crimes against humanity.
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Edinburgh
Thursday 20 June 2013
Temperature: 12 C to 21 C
Wind Speed: 7 mph
Wind direction: South east
Temperature: 11 C to 19 C
Wind Speed: 12 mph
Wind direction: West