Clinton has grim assessment of Syria

Aug. 24, 2011 at 1:56 PM
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WASHINGTON, Aug. 24 (UPI) -- There are credible reports of "gross human rights violations" in Syria, the U.S. secretary of state said as the UN. Security Council considers taking action.

The Security Council issued a statement condemning Syrian President Bashar Assad for his government's brutal crackdown on opposition protests. With international criticism growing, Washington said it would press for tougher action at the Security Council.

The U.N. Human Rights Council launched in independent commission of inquiry to investigate the claims in Syria. More than 2,000 civilians were reportedly killed in Syria at the hands of Assad's regime.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the international community has joined together to condemn the "horrific violence" taking place in Syria.

"There are credible reports that government forces in Syria have committed numerous gross human rights violations, including torture and summary executions in their crackdown against opposition members," she said in a statement.

Damascus said the international community is making a political issue of the conflict, accusing some U.N. member states of having a double standard. Opponents of a Security Council resolution had expressed reluctance of further action against Syria out of fear of sparking another conflict like the one unfolding in Libya.

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