Archive for: May 2014

UN ICC Proposal Vetoed by China and Russia

Russia vetoed the UN proposal, supported by 58 countries, to allow the International Criminal Court to investigate the Syrian Regime and Opposition for possible war crimes. According to UN investigators, a substantial amount of evidence that indicates both sides had committed crimes against humanity exists. China, who had remained silent on the issue, had vetoed the proposal as well.

This is the fourth time Russia and China had vetoed any proposal regarding action on the four-year Syrian civil war.

Russian Ambassador to the UN Vitaly Churkin said that the ICC proposal was only a “publicity stunt” and it will only make matters worse for the UN and the possibility of a diplomatic resolution to the crisis. Syria’s UN Ambassador had also sent a letter explaining that the UN proposal will only aggravate matters between Syria and the west.

According to US Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power, Russia and China’s veto of the proposal will disable the UN to condemn “widespread violation” of human rights and international humanitarian law by both the Syrian government and opposition. She said the two countries will bear the shame of not serving and protecting the human rights of Syrians caught between the crossfire.

Meanwhile, Syria’s government is due to deliver the last of its chemical weapons arsenal. However, it may miss its final deadline because Syria has not yet moved the last stockpile. It had already missed the earlier deadline of April 27 to hand over its complete chemical stockpile to be destroyed.

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Rebel Infighting Forces Thousands to Flee Villages

More than 60,000 people have fled their homes after in-fighting between al-Qaeda groups and Syrian rebel forces. The al-Qaeda linked Nusra Front had killed scores of rebel fighters and had kidnapped a rebel commander and several other insurgent leaders in different provinces.

According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, infighting among rebels had been common, and this disunity greatly contributes to the failure of the rebellion to conquer the Syrian Regime and overtake Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Hardline Islamists had been fighting insurgents supporting the Syrian National Coalition and other moderate groups. However, fighting among non-extremist rebel groups had been common due to lack of resources and turf wars.

The SOHR also said the al-Qaeda linked group had taken control of Abreeha from Iraq.

More than 62 fighters had been killed in the clashes in different towns.

The Observatory also reported the Nusra Front’s use of indiscriminate weaponry and burning of properties.

The Syrian civil war had begun as a peaceful protest, which spiralled into violence as the Syrian Regime heavy-handedly dispersed protests until protesters took up arms against the government in 2011. More than 200,000 people had been killed in the civil war, mostly civilians, specifically women and children.

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