Intensified air strikes by the international anti-ISIS coalition on Raqqa are causing “staggering” numbers of civilian deaths as US-backed forces close in on the extremist group’s stronghold, UN war crimes investigators said on Wednesday. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) warned of the deteriorating situation of thousands of civilians being displaced from the city located in northern Syria. Amid ongoing fierce fighting in and around Raqqa city, UNHCR…
Human Rights Watch stressed the need to make protecting civilians and respect for human rights a priority in the offensive to retake Raqqa from the ISIS extremist group as civilians have been reportedly killed in bombardment on the city. Key human rights priorities for anti-ISIS forces should include the provision of safe passage to fleeing civilians; the provision of sufficient support to displaced people; and increasing efforts to survey and…
The US Senate Foreign Relations Committee has advanced a bill that could be a meaningful step toward achieving justice and reducing the violence being practiced by the Assad regime and its allied foreign militias against the Syrian people for over six years. Democrat Senator Ben Cardin, who co-sponsored the bill with Republican Senator Marco Rubio, said the proposal aims to “make it clear to all who are participating in atrocities…
The United States launched an air strike on Tuesday against regime forces and their allied Iranian militias after they advanced on an area controlled by the Free Syrian Army in the Syrian Desert. “Despite previous warnings, pro-regime forces entered the agreed-upon de-confliction zone with a tank, artillery, anti-aircraft weapons, armed technical vehicles and more than 60 soldiers posing a threat to Coalition and partner forces based at the Al Tanf…
Syria’s dictator Bashar Al-Assad personally ordered the development and production of nerve gas in order to use it against his own people in early 2009, two years before the country’s civil war erupted, the French investigative website Mediapart has revealed. Scientists involved in the country’s chemical weapons program told the French news site that the Assad regime ordered the equipping of seven military bases with storage facilities for chemicals needed…
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