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Human Rights Watchdog Reports Regime Massacre in Syria after Peace Talks Relaunch | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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A Syrian man runs for cover amid the dust and smoke following a reported regime air strike on the rebel-controlled town of Hamouria, in the eastern Ghouta region on the outskirts of the capital Damascus, on April 3, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / ABDULMONAM EASSA

The Syrian Network For Human Rights(SNHR) has released a report entitled: “The Syrian Regime Perpetrates a Massacre in Hamouriya Town Two Days After Geneva Talks’ Fifth Round Start”. The report documents a massacre in Hamouriya town, in Damascus suburbs, that took place on Saturday, March 25, 2017.

The report relies on accounts from city residents, eyewitnesses, and survivors. Also, the report includes verified footage and videos showing great destruction that resulted from bombardment, and pictures of child victims.

SNHR is an independent non-profit non-governmental Syrian human rights organization. It was established in June 2011 in the wake of the systemically increasing human rights violations against the Syrian people and as a response to the need for various human rights groups that can contribute to exposing these practices and bring justice to the victims.

According to the report, targeted areas were civilian, where no military centers or weapon warehouses for armed opposition factions or extremist groups were to be found before or during the attack.

Fixed-wing Syrian regime forces warplanes fired four missiles targeting the center of al Rawda Street at the main market in the middle of Hamouriya town, which resulted in the death of 17 civilians including three children and seven women, and injured no less than 30 others, said the report.

Additionally, al Rawda Mosque was heavily damaged, and tens of shops were destroyed as well as a number of cars.

The Syrian regime has, beyond any doubt, violated Security Council Resolutions 2139 and 2254 which both states that indiscriminate attacks must be halted, the report stressed. Also, the regime violates Article 8 of Rome Statute through the crime of willful killing, which constitutes war crimes.

Targeting unarmed civilians, Syrian forces have violated the rules of the international human rights law which guarantee the right to life. Additionally, these violations were perpetrated in a non-international armed conflict which amount to a war crime.

The report called on the United Nations’ Security Council to take additional measures against the incessant bombardment of civilians, stressing that all warring parties to must respect these steps, and adhere to the rules of the international humanitarian law.

Also, the report gave emphasis to further supporting the International, Impartial and Independent Mechanism that was established in accordance with General Assembly Resolution 248/71, adopted on December 21, 2016.

The report called for referring the Syrian case to the International Criminal Court and holding all those who were involved accountable, and for the implementation of the international commitment known as “Responsibility to Protect” in order to save the lives of Syrians, culture, and arts from being destroyed, looted, and ruined.

A request was also made on expanding sanctions so that they include all prominent figures in the Syrian and Iranian regimes who are directly involved in committing crimes against humanity and war crimes against Syrians.