The Syrian Democratic Council

A report of the international investigation committee documents “war crimes” committed by Turkish-backed factions in Syria

The United Nations International Commission of Inquiry said that the Turkish-backed factions committed “war crimes” in both Afrin and Sere Kaniye / Ras al-Ain, and deliberately looted archaeological sites and distorted the cultural heritage in the region.
“The Turkish-backed Syrian National Army has committed war crimes in Afrin, Ras al-Ain and the surrounding areas, represented by hostage-taking, cruel treatment, torture and rape,” Paolo Pinheiro, head of the committee, said in a press statement.
“Entire societies and cultures are under attack, as UNESCO-designated heritage sites have been swept away and looted,” he added.
In a report covering the first half of 2020, the Syria Commission of Inquiry said that assassinations and rape of civilians by all parties, were characterized by sectarian hue, such actions are witnessing an escalation in the conflict that began in 2011.
The report states that “civilians in Afrin and Sere Kaniye regions witnessed a campaign of violations committed by members of the Syrian National Army, as well as shelling and car bombs with homemade bombs.
“The report notes that “multiple accounts indicate that Kurdish property was looted throughout Afrin region and seized by members of the Syrian National Army in a coordinated manner.
“Committee member Hani Mijali said that Turkey trained these groups and facilitated their entry into Turkey. “It can use its influence much more to interrogate them to stop the violations that are being committed, but he expressed his frustration at the same time.
On the other hand, the report states that with regard to government forces, the recent cases of enforced disappearance, torture, sexual violence, and deaths during detention amount to crimes against humanity.
He pointed to the increase in attacks on the sites of the Syrian Democratic Forces and the international coalition to fight “ISIS,” as well as the increasingly deteriorating conditions in the various camps of northeastern Syria.
The recommendations contained at the end of the report included a long-term ceasefire in all parts of the country in accordance with United Nations Resolution / 2254 /, and releasing of all prisoners and detainees and returning them to their homes.
At the conclusion of the press conference held in this regard, Commissioner Karen Koning AbuZayd affirmed that the report “covers only a small part of the violations committed” against the Syrian people.The commission is scheduled to submit the report to the UN Human Rights Council on 22 September.