ATROCITY ACCUSATIONS: U.N. accuses Islamic State of mass killings
By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
8/26/2014 (2 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
The United Nations condemned the "appalling, widespread" crimes committed by Islamic State forces in Iraq. Officials say that the mass executions of prisoners that could amount to war crimes.
U.N. Human Rights Chief Navi Pillay condemned "grave, horrific human rights violations" being committed by IS, a jihadist group that has seized large areas of Iraq and Syria.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - U.N. Human Rights Chief Navi Pillay condemned "grave, horrific human rights violations" being committed by IS, a jihadist group that has seized large areas of Iraq and Syria.
Pillay said in a statement that up to 670 prisoners from Badush prison in Mosul were killed by IS forces on June 10. Pillay quoted survivors and witnesses in describing the "massacre" to U.N. human rights investigators.
"Such cold-blooded, systematic and intentional killings of civilians, after singling them out for their religious affiliation, may amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity," Pillay said.
IS forces loaded 1,000 to 1,500 prisoners from the jail on to trucks and took them for screening, Pillay said. Sunni inmates were then separated and removed. "ISIL gunmen then yelled insults at the remaining prisoners, lined them up in four rows, ordered them to kneel and opened fire," she said.
Islamic State fighters have made gains against Kurdish forces in the north in recent weeks, seizing towns, oilfields and Iraq's largest dam. The sole victory of the past few weeks was when Kurdish forces, backed by U.S. air power, took back the Mosul dam.
The video depicting the beheading of American journalist James Foley sparked outrage in the West and calls for tougher action against the jihadists, including taking the fight to them in Syria as well as Iraq.
Experts suggest that attacking Islamic State in Syria would require and arrangement with the government of President Bashar al-Assad. This would be a dramatic turnaround, as Bashar has been widely condemned in the West. An uprising against him began three years ago has left his nation in a state of ongoing civil war.
Syria said it would cooperate in any international efforts to fight Islamic State in the country, after Washington signaled it was considering extending the battle against the militants into Syrian territory.
Foreign Minister Walid al-Moualem presented his country as a vital partner in the war against Islamic State.
"Syria, geographically and operationally, is the center of the international coalition to fight Islamic State," Moualem said in a TV interview. "States must come to it if they are serious in combating terrorism," he added.
Moualem said his government was ready to cooperate with any country fighting militants - although air raids without Damascus's approval would be seen as hostile acts.
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