Arms race in Syria must be stopped to reduce suffering of civilians

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UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré

Barrel bombs continue to shower civilians in Syria, towns remain under siege while torture and other gross human rights violations are carried out in total impunity.

The Chair of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Syria (COI) made the remarks on Friday, ahead of his briefing to the Security Council.

It's the Commission's fourth time to appear before the Council.

Mr Paulo Sérgio Pinheiro and his team have repeatedly asked the international community to demand accountability for these crimes.

"We continue to have full-fledged impunity in Syria. All parties are committing these horrendous violations and nobody is answering to what is required. They are obliged to respect in the Geneva conventions or several human right treaties. And we will continue to repeat to the Council that victory is an illusion, there is no military solution only a negotiated settlement."

Mr Pinheiro urged Member States to withdraw their support to the parties in the conflict by ending what he described as their "arms race".

He expressed the Commission's support to the Secretary-General's proposal to implement an arms embargo in Syria.

The Commission of Inquiry on Syria has yet to receive permission to enter the country but it has sustained its field investigations in order to reach victims.

Jocelyne Sambira, United Nations.

Duration: 1’29”

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