Syrian regime guilty of crimes against humanity: Amnesty

A member of the Syrian pro-regime forces fires a heavy machine gun mounted on the back of a pickup truck, during the advance towards rebel-held positions west of Aleppo, near Abu al-Zuhur military airport in the Idlib province countryside, on Saturday. (AFP)
Updated 13 November 2017

Syrian regime guilty of crimes against humanity: Amnesty

LONDON: The Syrian regime’s sieges of its population ahead of reaching “reconciliation” agreements with the opposition amount to crimes and against humanity and war crimes, Amnesty International said Monday.
In a report titled “We leave or we die,” Amnesty analyzed four local accords which the rights body said were preceded by unlawful sieges and bombardment aimed at forcing civilians to leave their homes.
“The sieges, unlawful killings and forced displacement by government forces are part of a systematic as well as widespread attack on the civilian population, therefore constituting crimes against humanity,” the report said.
Brokered between August 2016 and March 2017, the agreements came after prolonged sieges during which both the Syrian government and opposition forces indiscriminately attacked civilians.
“The Syrian government and, to a lesser degree, armed opposition groups have enforced sieges on densely populated areas, depriving civilians of food, medicine and other basic necessities in violation of international humanitarian law,” Amnesty said.
Such actions by the Syrian regime in Daraya, Madaya, eastern Aleppo city, and the Al-Waer neighborhood in Homs city amounted to war crimes.
The same tactics were also found to have been used by opposition groups which besieged Kefraya and Foua, also carrying out war crimes through their indiscriminate attacks on civilians.
In eastern Aleppo city, Amnesty documented 10 attacks between July and December, 2016, during which the regime allegedly targeted neighborhoods “far away from the front lines and with no apparent military objectives in the vicinity.”
The report also documented a total of eight attacks carried out by opposition forces in western and northern Aleppo city, between August and November last year, during which weapons described as “hell cannons” were used against civilians.
The human rights organization said it conducted the research using videos and satellite imagery alongside interviews with 134 people, including residents and UN officials, between April and September this year.
Amnesty appealed to the international community to refer the situation in Syria to the International Criminal Court and demand unhindered access to the country for those investigating rights abuses.
More than 330,000 people have been killed in Syria and millions displaced since the conflict began in March 2011.


Houthis killed in clashes with Yemen army

The Yemeni army forced the militants to flee and targeted Houthi reinforcements. (File/AFP)
Updated 15 December 2019

Houthis killed in clashes with Yemen army

  • The clashes broke out when Houthi militants tried to sneak into areas they lost control

DUBAI: The Yemeni Army killed 18 Houthis and wounded 27 in clashes with the Iranian-backed militia in Saada, state news agency SPA reported on Saturday.

The clashes broke out when Houthi militants tried to sneak into areas they lost control the past two months, according to Yemen's military source “SeptemberNet.”

The Yemeni army forced the militants to flee and targeted Houthi reinforcements.

Meanwhile, the army killed 17 Houthis and wounded 21 others including two commanders at an ambush in Al-Dhale, southern Yemen earlier on Saturday, a military source said.