The international community has taken a “step closer” to achieving justice for war crimes committed in Syria, the judge leading a new United Nations effort to investigate the conflict said on Tuesday.
The UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres last July appointed Mrs Marchi-Uhel of France to head the International, Impartial and Independent Mechanism which was created on the orders of the United Nation General Assembly in late 2016.
Speaking in Geneva, Marchi-Uhel said that the body she was appointed to head “is tasked with collecting, consolidating, preserving and analyzing information and evidence.” She pointed out that the body is not mandated to prosecute perpetrators of war crimes as it not an international tribunal.
Marchi-Uhel will head a team of some 50 people including lawyers, analysts and computer specialists, some of whom will have to be Arabic speakers to study and analyze all the information collected about the crimes committed in Syria.
The body publishes a report on its findings and the evidence it is gathering every six months.
Meanwhile, head of the Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR), Fada Abdul Ghani, said that the killings of detainees under torture are no longer prompting any reaction, adding that the Assad regime succeeded in “acquainting the international community with news of deaths under torture.”
“We no longer hear about the need to stop torture in Syria from the UN envoy Staffan de Mistura or from ambassadors of Syria’s friends,” Abdul Ghani said. He added that the Assad regime has one of the world’s worst track records of forcibly disappearing and torturing detainees.
The Network documented the deaths of 32 people under torture last August, including 27 by the Assad regime forces. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department + Al-Jazeera)