Thursday, February 23, 2012

U.N. report urges political dialogue, justice in Syria

(CNN) -- United Nations' bodies investigating crimes and human rights violations in Syria should identify perpetrators and hold them accountable, a U.N. commission said Thursday, stressing that "urgent, inclusive political dialogue" is needed to end the crisis.

The Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic also cited reports from many observers and diplomats about "widespread, systematic and gross human rights violations" being conducted with the "apparent knowledge and consent" of the country's "highest levels" -- incidents that amount to "crimes against humanity."

"The government has manifestly failed in its responsibility to protect the population," the report said. "Anti-government armed groups have also committed abuses, although not comparable in scale and organization with those carried out by the state."

The commission, which has issued other reports, says it has documented "crimes against humanity and other gross violations." Read More