IS Accused Of Syria Mass Atrocities

SYRIAIslamic State (IS) militants have committed “mass atrocities” in Syria and have recruited children as fighters, the United Nations says.

In a report, investigators said public executions are a “common spectacle” in areas run by IS, one of the groups fighting against Syria’s government.

The report also accuses the Damascus authorities of using chemical agents in eight separate incidents this year.

The conflict between government forces and several rebel groups began in 2011. Some 200,000 people have died since then. The findings are the result of six months of interviews and evidence collected between January and July this year as part of an inquiry into human rights violations inside Syria.

The report details abuses by both sides in the conflict; it says the government has used barrel bombs on civilian neighbour-hoods.

“In some instances, there is clear evidence that civilian gatherings were deliberately targeted” by government forces, the investigators said.

“In government prisons, detainees were subjected to horrific torture and sexual assault,” they add.

Among the other allegations of war crimes committed by the Syrian government of President Bashar al-Assad was the use of suspected chlorine gas, a chemical agent, in eight separate incidents in April and May of this year.

The period covered in the report coincides with the growth of IS in Syria.

The group seeks to create an independent Islamic State in an area that stretches across Syria and Iraq.

It has attracted jihadists from across the region, as well as fighters from Western countries including the UK and the US.

In their report, UN investigators said IS was waging a campaign of fear in northern Syria, including amputations, public executions and whippings.

“Bodies of those killed are placed on display for several days, terrorising the local population,” the document says.

“Women have been lashed for not abiding by IS’s dress code. In Raqqa, children as young as 10 are being recruited and trained at IS camps.”

On Wednesday IS supporters tweeted pictures allegedly showing militants executing Syrian army soldiers after capturing the government Tabqa airbase near Raqqa in eastern Syria. The pictures have not been verified. — BBC

 

 

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