World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


UN: Arms race in Syria must be stopped

Arms race in Syria must be stopped to reduce civilian suffering, says head of UN panel

25 July 2014

As ‘gross human rights violations’ continue in Syria, the head of a United Nations-appointed human rights probe today implored Member States to stop supplying weapons to both sides.

Speaking to UN Radio ahead of an informal gathering with members of the Security Council, the Chair of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Syria underscored that there is no military solution to the conflict and echoed Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s calls for an arms embargo on the country.

“This arms race must be stopped,” said Paulo Sérgio Pinheiro. “We would like very much that the different Member States will interrupt their support in terms of weapons, of arms, for both sides.”

He said that bombardment of civilian populations by the Syrian air force and non-State armed groups continues, along with shelling of civilians and torture.

“We continue to have full-fledged impunity in Syria,” Mr. Pinheiro said. “All parties are committing these horrendous violations and nobody is answering to what is required.”

He noted that it is ultimately up to the Security Council to refer Syria to the International Criminal Court (ICC) or to establish a special tribunal, but so far little action has been taken.

“We are teaching that accountability is completely absent in this conflict,” noted Mr. Pinheiro. He added that the Commission continues to document data and collect evidence which will one day be used for accountability, “but this conflict is already in its fourth year and this impunity continues unabated.”
He also reminded the parties that they are obliged to respect the Geneva conventions and human rights treaties.

“And we will continue to repeat to the Council that victory is an illusion, there is no military solution, only a negotiated settlement,” he underscored.
Established by the UN Human Rights Council in August 2011, the Commission also includes experts Karen Koning Abuzayd, Carla del Ponte and Vitit Muntarbhorn. It has been mandated to investigate and record all violations of international human rights law during the Syria conflict.

Speaking to reporters after the briefing, Ms. Abuzayd confirmed that the Commission has four lists of suspected perpetrators, which include individuals, such as those who command airports from which bombings take place and detention centres. Names of foreign fighters are also listed even though the groups are fragmented and do not have formal command chains.

The Commission is expected to present its latest report to the Human Rights Council on 17 September.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Palestinian Refugees From Syria Face Worsening Situation

Palestinian women at a UNRWA distribution centre in the Jaramana refugee camp, Damascus, Syria. Photo: UNRWA/Carole Alfarah More>>

ALSO:

Greece Risks Prolonged Social Crisis

Greece’s severe financial crisis has bred social unrest and intolerance of the nearly one million irregular migrants living in the country (October 2012). Photo: IRIN/Kristy Siegfried More>>

Madagascar: Warning Of ‘rapid’ Spread Of Plague In Capital

Ny Hantra Andriatsifasoa survived the bubonic plague after being infected in Madagascar in 2011. Photo: IRIN/Tiana Randriaharimalala More>>

New Bird Flu Strain In Europe Threatens Poultry Sector

24 November 2014 – The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization ( FAO ) today warned that a new bird flu strain detected in Europe poses a significant threat to the poultry sector, especially in low-resourced countries situated along ... More>>

Mexico: Disappearances Reach Record Number This Year

The National Registry of Missing Persons acknowledges that from 2007 to date, there are 23,605 cases of disappeared persons; 40% have been reported during the current administration of President Enrique Peña Nieto. More>>

Ban To Take Up Fight Against Ebola With All UN Organisations

Street sellers at Waterside market in central Monrovia, where there has seen a huge drop in customers over the past months due to the onset of the Ebola Virus Disease. Photo: UNDP/Carly Learson (20 November 2014) More>>

ALSO:

Darfur: UN-Backed Event Promotes Role Of Women In Peace

Darfur: amid mass rape allegations, UN-backed event promotes role of women in peace processes More>>

Ebola Cases No Longer Rising In Guinea And Liberia

In Conakry, Guinea, a mobilizer teaches children about proper handwashing techniques, which help prevent the spread of diseases, including Ebola. Photo: UNICEF/Timothy La Rose More>>

ALSO:


Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news