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Syria: AI report accuses Syria of crimes against humanity

last updated Jul 06, 2011

Amnesty International (AI) has released a report accusing Syria of crimes against humanity during a military operation in the western village of Tell Kalakh. According to the human rights group, Syrian security forces entered Tell Kalakh on 14 May following demonstrations against the regime of President Bashir al-Assad and opened fire on fleeing people.

The report is based on interviews with more than 50 people from Tell Kalakh who fled the country to Lebanon. AI and other human rights groups have been denied access to Syria. During the military operation at least one person was allegedly killed by snipers and ambulances came under fire. In the following days, numerous people were detained. Witnesses claim that most people were subjected to torture. At least nine people died in custody bearing torture marks such as cuts to the chest, slashes on the thighs and gunshot wounds.

The AI report comes a day after Syrian security forces shot 14 people in the city of Hama which has owned a reputation as a symbol of anti-government activity. Since the beginning of the protests against the authoritarian regime of al-Assad more than 1,350 civilians and 350 security personnel have been killed, according to Syrian human rights groups.

The Syrian government has not commented on the report. AI urges the UN Security Council to refer the case to the International Criminal Court (ICC) in the Hague.

AI report: Crackdown in Syria - Terror in Tell Kalakh

BBC News: Amnesty accuses Syria of crimes against humanity

CNN: Report: Syrian brutality could amount to crimes against humanity

AP: Amnesty says Syrian crackdown may be war crime

Syrian Arab Republic country profile