Millennium Post

UN urges probe into Syrian war crimes

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Monday called for all war criminals in Syria to be brought to justice, as his human rights chief urged a probe into the slaughter of hundreds of people in the town of Daraya. ‘We must ensure that anyone, on any side, who commits war crimes, crimes against humanity or other violations of international human rights or humanitarian law is brought to justice,’ Ban said in Geneva, where he opened the 21st session of the United Nations Human Rights Council.

‘I am deeply troubled by the aerial bombardments of civilians by government forces, by the increasing sectarian tensions, by the deteriorating humanitarian situation and by the apparent choice of both sides to pursue a solution through force rather than dialogue,’ he said. Ban called on the rights council ‘to maintain its vigilance on Syria, including on the question of accountability’.

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay for her part urged an immediate probe into the slaughter late last month of several hundred people in the Syrian town of Daraya.

‘I am deeply shocked by the reports of the massacre in Daraya and I urge an immediate and thorough investigation into this incident,’ she said on the first day of the three-week rights council session.

‘I call on the (Syrian) government to ensure full and unhindered access to the (UN) Independent Commission of Inquiry,’ she said, also calling for ‘full support’ of the new UN and Arab League peace envoy for the Syria conflict, Lakhdar Brahimi. Brahimi, who succeeds Kofi Annan in the role, was on Monday meeting with Arab League officials, Egypt's President Mohamed Morsi and other leaders in Cairo to discuss the crisis.


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