Photo: UN Photo/Pierre Albouy .Photo: UN Photo/Pierre Albouy

UN to investigate human rights violations in Syria

5/2/2011 // The UN Human Rights Council has passed a sharply worded resolution condemning the Syrian authorities’ use of violence and calling for an investigation into human rights violations in the country. Norway chaired the Council's meeting in Geneva.

“This is a strong message to the Syrian authorities to put an end to all violence and to those responsible for the attacks and human rights violations that they will be held accountable,” said Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre.

The UN Human Rights Council held a special session on Friday to discuss the dramatic situation in Syria. The meeting was chaired by Ambassador to the Permanent Mission of Norway in Geneva Bente Angell-Hansen.

The Council passed a resolution by a solid majority calling on the Syrian authorities to put an end to all violence, respect fundamental human rights, release all prisoners of conscience immediately and allow access for humanitarian aid. The resolution is in keeping with the views expressed by Norway at the special session.

The resolution also requests the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to urgently dispatch a mission to Syria to investigate serious human rights violations perpetrated in the country in recent weeks. The purpose is to establish the facts and circumstances of such violations and ensure that all those responsible are brought to justice.

The resolution also urges the authorities to allow access to the Internet and telecommunications networks and to lift censorship on reporting, including by allowing appropriate access by foreign journalists.

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