Genocide in Aleppo, Syria as Assad loyalists retake the city
News reports of civilians, including women and children, executed in the streets of Eastern Aleppo as forces loyal to Bashar-al Assad retake the city and move into areas once held by rebel fighters, are horrifying the world, and follow on the heals of desperate pleas from activists that the city is suffering a genocide.
Raw news footage from Aleppo, Syria via USA Today
The U.N. Human Rights Office has relayed reports that at least 82 civilians, including 11 women and 13 children, have been killed, while unconfirmed reports from activists place the number much higher. And large swathes of the city itself are in ruins, following heavy bombing. Over the course of the 5-year-long Syrian war, over 500,000 people have been killed, and millions of refugees have been displaced, many of whom have fled their homes to take refuge in other countries.
Claims of genocide are of course extremely serious and must continue to be verified as news reports come in. The execution of civilian noncombatants, including women and children, is clearly an unconscionable war crime that must not be tolerated by the international community. Murdering members of an unarmed civilian population for any reason is unacceptable and must end immediately. Such an outrage clearly violates all standards of international and military law.
The suffering of the Syrian people over the course of this terrible war is tragic, and should move all decent people to action. The international community must redouble its efforts to bring this violent conflict to an end, and punish those guilty of war crimes, no matter what what political or military affiliation they claim.
Learn about Aleppo genocide claims (USA Today)
Photo: Syrian raw news feed via USA Today (screen capture)