UN wants Syria referred to International Criminal Court

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Navi Pillay

The UN Human Rights chief has reiterated her call for Syria to be referred to the International Criminal Court.

In addition, the United Nations is calling for an immediate cease-fire in the country so that humanitarian aid can get in.

Speaking at the start of an urgent debate by the Human Rights Council in Geneva, Navi Pillay said the situation in Syria was rapidly deteriorating. The UN Human Rights chief cited massive campaigns of arrest by the military as well as arbitrary detention of protesters and human rights activist.

Ms Pillay says in view of the unspeakable human rights violations that continue to be committed in the country the ICC must intervene.

"I further call upon the Government of Syria to allow independent international monitors to visit all places of detention and grant unhindered access to humanitarian actors. The Government must launch prompt, independent and impartial investigations in accordance with international standards to end impunity, ensure accountability, bring perpetrators to justice, and to take measures to ensure adequate, effective and prompt reparation for the victims. However, what is urgently needed today is for the killings to stop. More than at any other time, those committing atrocities in Syria have to understand that the international community will not stand by and watch this carnage and that their decisions and the actions  they take today ultimately will not go unpunished."

The UN says more than 7,500 people have been killed in Syria since the government crackdown on pro-democracy protesters began 11 months ago.

Duration: 1’00″

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