Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Syria: Reports of execution-style killings in Aleppo point to war crimes - AMNESTY STATEMENT

Amnesty International
December 13, 2016

“The reports that civilians - including children - are being massacred in cold blood in their homes by Syrian government forces are deeply shocking but not unexpected, given their conduct to date. Such extrajudicial executions would amount to war crimes,” said Lynn Maalouf, Deputy Director for Research at the Beirut Regional office.  
“Throughout the conflict Syrian government forces, backed by Russia, have repeatedly displayed a callous disregard for international humanitarian law and utter disdain for the fate of civilians. In fact, they have regularly targeted civilians as a strategy, both during military operations and through the mass-scale use of arbitrary detention, disappearances and torture and other ill-treatment. As government forces gain full control of eastern Aleppo the risk that they will commit further atrocities raises grave fears for thousands of civilians still trapped.
“In recent months the world, including the UN Security Council, has watched from the side-lines as civilians have been slaughtered on a daily basis and eastern Aleppo has been flattened and transformed into a mass grave. The global inaction in the face of such inhumanity is shameful. The lack of accountability for war crimes and crimes against humanity has allowed the parties, particularly government forces, to commit such crimes on a mass scale. It is now crucial that 
independent monitors are deployed to ensure that the civilian population is protected and that humanitarian access is granted so that life-saving aid can reach all those in need.”
Sara Hashash
Media Manager, Middle East and North Africa
Amnesty International – International Secretariat