Target: United Nations Security Council
Goal: Refer Syria’s crimes against humanity to the International Criminal Court.
On August 4, 2013, armed opposition groups in Syria killed 190 civilians and took 200 hostages during a military operation in a rural community. Unfortunately, 67 of the victims were unlawfully killed, and the majority of the hostages are women and children.
The two opposition forces, the Islamic State of Iraq and Sham and Jaish al-Muhajireen wal-Ansar, killed the civilians during the first day of their operation and currently maintain hold of their hostages. A 105 page report released by Human Rights Watch details the account of the operation and presents evidence to show that these actions can be considered crimes against humanity. Interviews were conducted which included residents who survived the attack, the emergency response team, fighters, and activists on both the government and opposition sides. From these interviews, Human Rights Watch found that funding was provided for the offense and that the attacks were not from rogue fighters, but were planned. Wounds included gun shots and stabbings, and the groups indiscriminately killed women, children, and the elderly.
If the case is brought up to the International Criminal Court, activists hope that the groups and leaders responsible will be held accountable and charged for their crimes. However, this case needs to get to the ICC first. It is not known why the civilian population was targeted. However, there is sufficient evidence to conclude that crimes against humanity were committed and human rights activists are clamoring for the case to be reviewed by the International Criminal Court. Syria’s activity has been well documented, as the region has been known for its systematic killings and torture. If you wish for the United Nations Security Council to refer this case to the ICC, sign the petition below and make your voice heard.
Dear United Nations Security Council,
I am writing to ask that you refer the case involving the victims and hostages of the Latakia region in Syria to the International Criminal Court. There is sufficient evidence from Human Rights Watch and other organizations to prosecute those responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity. It is imperative that this case be reviewed, as there are still civilians being held hostage; the majority of them are women and children.
With the rise of violence and crime in Syria, it is critical that authorities in the country realize that the world is watching them, and will hold the criminals responsible. By referring the case to the ICC , you can give the people of the Latakia region some semblance of justice for their suffering.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Scott Bobb via Wikimedia