U.S. House Panel accuses Assad, Russia, Iran of war crimes in Syria
The U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee on Wednesday unanimously passed two resolutions to increase pressure on the Obama administration to do more to stop Islamic State terrorists and to help the people of Syria, according to Voice of America.
One of the resolutions accuses Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his allies, singling out Russia and Iran, of committing war crimes against Syrian civilians. It contends that “the vast majority of the civilians who have died in the Syrian conflict have been killed by the government of Syria and its allies, specifically the Russian Federation, the Islamic Republic of Iran, and Iran’s terrorist proxies including Hezbollah,” VOA reports.
The war crimes resolution calls on President Barack Obama to direct his U.N. ambassador to support creation of an international war crimes tribunal to prosecute anyone guilty of committing war crimes and crimes against humanity in Syria.
Obama continues anti-Russian sanctions for another yearThe sponsor of the resolution, Republican Representative Chris Smith of New Jersey, cited similar war crimes tribunals in the former Yugoslavia and Sierra Leone, saying they were effective in bringing perpetrators to justice.
The war crimes resolution says Russia has not only enabled Assad but also "has committed its own violations of international law by leading deliberate bombing campaigns on civilian targets including bakeries, hospitals, markets and schools."