UN draws up list of suspected human rights violators in Syria

UN draws up list of suspected human rights violators in Syria

United Nations investigators have drawn up a list of names of Syrian officials believed to be responsible for crimes against humanity and presented it to the human rights chief, the British Foreign Office said Thursday.

The names were compiled by a three-member Commission of Inquiry, working for the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, and were handed over to Navi Pillay, the High Commissioner for Human Rights, dpa reported.

"I welcome the Commission's report today (Thursday)," said Foreign Office Minister Alistair Burt in London. "Its conclusion is damning: Syrian forces have committed crimes against humanity and other gross human rights violations with the apparent knowledge and consent of the highest levels of state."

Burt said the list of suspected individuals was given to Pillay and "those responsible for these terrible atrocities should be in no doubt that they will be held to account for their crimes."

Human rights organizations have asked the UN to refer the cases of crimes against humanity in Syria to the International Criminal Court at The Hague.

The report called for further investigation of Syrian officials involved in the deaths of civilians, including children, during the 11-month unrest in the country. The UN said more than 5,400 people have been killed.

Pillay appeared before the UN General Assembly in New York last week, saying that "the nature and scale of abuses committed by Syrian forces indicate that crimes against humanity are likely to have been committed since March 2011."

"Independent, credible and corroborated accounts indicate that these abuses have taken place as part of a widespread and systematic attack on civilians," she said.

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