For the violence Syrian President has unleashed on his people in the past 11 months to suppress the uprising, he is fit to be termed as a war criminal, says Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton.
“I think that based on definitions of war criminal and crimes against humanity, there would be an argument to be made that he would fit into that category,” Clinton told the Senate Appropriations subcommittee on foreign operations.
She, however, cautioned the international community not to make any designation or level charges as it might limit the options to persuade leaders to step down from power.
Mounting pressure on Bashar al-Assad
Meanwhile, the United Nations is leaving no stone unturned to pressurize Assad’s regime from all corners. In a rebuking statement at the UN Human Rights Commission meeting on Tuesday, Navi Pillay, U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, said she was appalled at the rapidly deteriorating rights and humanitarian situation in Syria, reiterating that Syria should be referred to the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC).
William Hague, Foreign Secretary, U.K., also proposed tightening diplomatic and economic strange hold of Assad’s regime.
The divide within
Syria enjoys the backing of Russia and China, two nations vested with veto power that have already vetoed against two Security Council resolutions that would have also endorsed an Arab League plan to help end the Syrian crisis.
Hillary Clinton blasted the two nations as ‘despicable’ saying, “Russia and China are setting themselves against the aspirations of not only the Syrian people but the entire Arab Spring.
“This is not a sustainable position,” she added.
In order to reach a consensus, the UN Security Council has urged Russia and China not to veto a new resolution on Syria amid reports that the death toll in the conflict has topped 7,500.
The Security Council aims to win the support of Russia and China who blocked previous attempts saying the draft resolution places more emphasis on getting humanitarian aid to civilians in besieged areas of the violence-torn nation.
“I solemnly ask Russia and China not to block this new resolution,” urged the French foreign minister Alain Juppé on Tuesday.