Thursday, June 13, 2013


U.N.;Syrian Death Toll Approaches 93,000.

PARIS — Civilians are bearing the brunt of the fighting in Syria, Navi Pillay, the United Nations high commissioner for human rights, said on Thursday,with 92,901 killings documented there through the end of April, a number that may understate the magnitude of the violence in the 25-month civil war. 

“The constant flow of killings continues at shockingly high levels,” Ms. Pillay said in a statement in Geneva, “with more than 5,000 killings documented every month since last July, including a total of just under 27,000 new killings since Dec. 1.”

But Ms. Pillay said an analysis done on behalf of the U.N. Human Rights Office show that “this is most likely a minimum casualty figure. The true number of those killed is potentially much higher.”

President Bashar al-Assad’s forces have been battling rebels since March 2011 in a bloody contest that has devastated cities and villages across the country. The U.N. study was based on reports of 263,055 killings. Any reported killing that did not fully identify the victim by name, date and the location of death, was excluded to avoid the possibility of duplication.

“This extremely high rate of killings, month after month, reflects the drastically deteriorating pattern of the conflict over the past year,” Ms. Pillay said in the statement, and “civilians are bearing the brunt of widespread, violent and often indiscriminate attacks.”

“Government forces are shelling and launching aerial attacks on urban areas day in and day out,” she said, and are also using strategic missiles and cluster and thermobaric bombs. Opposition forces have also shelled residential areas, albeit using less firepower and there have been multiple bombings resulting in casualties in the heart of cities, especially Damascus.

The largest number of killings has been recorded around Damascus, Homs, Aleppo and Idlib, and more than four out of five have been men. But the U.N. was unable to state definitively what proportion of those killed had been combatants.

Ms. Pillay said the killings of “at least 6,561 minors, including at least 1,729 children under 10 years old” were documented, and that there were “well-documented cases of individual children being tortured and executed, and entire families, including babies, being massacred – which, along with this devastatingly high death toll, is a terrible reminder of just how vicious this conflict has become.”

Ms. Pillay called for “an immediate cease-fire,” saying: “Nobody is gaining anything from this senseless carnage.”

She also urged the international community to help broker an end to the conflict, saying: “The only answer is a negotiated political solution. Tragically, shamefully, nothing will restore the 93,000 or more individual lives already lost.”

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The idea behind the text.
Respect for the truth is almost the basis of all morality.
Nothing can come from nothing.

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