Child Massacre in Houla

The UN has confirmed that over 90 civilians have been killed in Houla. The dead include 32 children under the age of 10. The killing of these innocent children is a shocking and horrific crime in clear violation of international law, and those responsible must be held accountable.

The attacks were also in complete violation of the Syrian Government’s commitment to cease the use of violence in all its forms, currently being monitored by UNSMIS unarmed military observers.

Syria and the UN now need to ensure that all those responsible for this appalling massacre are brought to justice, and that children and other civilians in Syria are protected from the violence.

Since the protests and uprisings against the Assad regime began in early 2011 the UN estimates that more than 9,000 people, mostly civilians, have been killed and tens of thousands displaced. As we have previously written, these numbers continue to include many children, caught up in the violence and repression, and driven from their homes. It is essential that the rights of children throughout Syria are protected, and that no more children are allowed to be casualties of the violence.

 

The UN statement on the massacre can be found here.

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8 comments

I was beyond outrage a the sickening news from Houla, especially the 32 children killed there. The way I see it, people need to actually GO to Syria and stand with the people opposing the government. Maybe when there are pictures on the news of Europeans, Americans and such also showing their feelings like this the UN will finally take real action.

happyhamster 6 years ago

Everybody is outraged by the events in Houla, but I'm curious to know what Amnesty mean by 'words are not enough'. What action are they proposing? Security council unanimity with Russia and China onside would be good, but of course even a unanimous UN resolution is just another form of words. You can't send peacekeeping troops to a sovereign state that doesn't want them - that's an invasion. Is Amnesty advocating military intervention? Isn't that the only realistic alternative to diplomatic pressure? To criticise inaction without putting forward a practical alternative is cowardly and deserves to be ignored.

paul_7 6 years ago

I'm afraid I agree with Paul, the time for words is over. The UN to their credit are embarking on sanctions so the next stage is underway but it may come down to arming the rebels as they have no chance against Assad with Russian weapons and Chinese communication technology. The Russians I see as being the main culprit in the massacres as they benefit massively if Assad requires more arms to kill more people. Shame on their Government. Putin has been recognised as a thug for a long time, I think it's time the world expressed condemnation at Russia's role in this war. They are still stuck in cold-war power politics.

nicholaslalvani 6 years ago

Just to clarify - I wasn't necessarily advocating military action. That route (like all routes) is plagued with problems. But if Amnesty's slogan is "Words are not enough", they are effectively advocating it, because anything short of military action would be, in one form or another, just words. To put it another way, "Words are not enough" is pretty much what Blair and Bush were saying in the run-up to the Iraq invasion. There's nothing wrong with that position; I'm just surprised Amnesty are adopting it! Happyhamster wants the UN to "finally take real action". Again, that means troops on the ground. An invasion. Unless somebody can suggest an effective non-military way of stopping a tyrant in his tracks - a valid alternative to the diplomacy, sanctions, etc which are already being applied.

paul_7 6 years ago

I am in despair reading some of these comments. No-one seems to understand what is really going on here and the idea that intervention in Libya and Syria has anything to do with "humanitarian iaid" is naive in the extreme.

This really about US/NATO control of the region. Look at the map. The US now control Saudi, Yemen, Oman and UAE and they have client states in Georgia, Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan to the north. The strong nations that resisted American control, Libya and Iraq have been eliminated. Only 2 countries remain: Syria and Iran and once these have been eliminated, the US wil have control of the region ad over 70% of the worlds oil and natural gas.

However, the Syria situation is completely different and there is a real danger of an escalation here. The US has plans in place for an attack on Iran. If there is military intervention by US/NATO then Iran has said that they will provide military assistance to help protect Syria and this will give US/NATO the opportunity/justification to attack Iran. The likely outcome would be a war that engulf the entire middle-east and Asia. Millions will die. (And remember the US has said publicly that they WILL use tactical nuclear weapons.)

And it gets worse: Russia regards Syria as an ally and will not stand by and watch it destroyed. Similarly, China has strong links with Iran and will support them as far as possible. The consequences of either of these countries becoming involved is unimaginable.

So what we need to do is email the Russian and Chinese envoys to ask them to stand firm and veto any UN resolution calling for military intervention. Instead we need a resolution calling on US/NATO/Saudi to stop funding and supplying arms to the FSA/rebels/terror groups.

To understand the situation read the articles about the US/NATO war agenda at www.globalresearch.ca

For possible solutions that do not involve the deaths of millions read "Searching for solutions in Syria":

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=31349

PS Nicholas says "the UN to their credit are embarking on sanctions" Sanctions in Iraq was responsible for the deaths of up to a million children so maybe not such a good idea.

cbeech 6 years ago

I am in despair reading some of these comments. No-one seems to understand what is really going on here and the idea that intervention in Libya and Syria has anything to do with "humanitarian iaid" is naive in the extreme.

This really about US/NATO control of the region. Look at the map. The US now control Saudi, Yemen, Oman and UAE and they have client states in Georgia, Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan to the north. The strong nations that resisted American control, Libya and Iraq have been eliminated. Only 2 countries remain: Syria and Iran and once these have been eliminated, the US wil have control of the region ad over 70% of the worlds oil and natural gas.

However, the Syria situation is completely different and there is a real danger of an escalation here. The US has plans in place for an attack on Iran. If there is military intervention by US/NATO then Iran has said that they will provide military assistance to help protect Syria and this will give US/NATO the opportunity/justification to attack Iran. The likely outcome would be a war that engulf the entire middle-east and Asia. Millions will die. (And remember the US has said publicly that they WILL use tactical nuclear weapons.)

And it gets worse: Russia regards Syria as an ally and will not stand by and watch it destroyed. Similarly, China has strong links with Iran and will support them as far as possible. The consequences of either of these countries becoming involved is unimaginable.

So what we need to do is email the Russian and Chinese envoys to ask them to stand firm and veto any UN resolution calling for military intervention. Instead we need a resolution calling on US/NATO/Saudi to stop funding and supplying arms to the FSA/rebels/terror groups.

To understand the situation read the articles about the US/NATO war agenda at www.globalresearch.ca

For possible solutions that do not involve the deaths of millions read "Searching for solutions in Syria":

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=31349

PS Nicholas says "the UN to their credit are embarking on sanctions" Sanctions in Iraq was responsible for the deaths of up to a million children so maybe not such a good idea.

cbeech 6 years ago

Hi cbeech – obviously it would also be good if you were in despair at the executions, torture and rape committed by the Syrian security forces and their militia - these abuses by the Syrian authorities are hardly a new phenomena and Amnesty has a long history
researching and campaigning against violations by the State, long before the uprising last year. It is clear that for a long time, the authorities have been failing in their own responsibility to protect Syrian civilians.

Even if one were to take the Syrian governments line as 100% accurate it is odd they still fail to co-operate fully with the UN observer mission who could verify government accounts.

They continue to fail in providing full co-operation and unimpeded access to the independent international Commission of Inquiry to investigate ALL alleged crimes under international law and violations and abuses of international human rights law.

They have not Invited the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary, or arbitrary executions, as well as other relevant UN Special Procedure mandate holders so they can carry out independent investigations into ALL alleged crimes under international law and other serious human rights violations and abuses.

It would seem if they wanted to show the world that their narrative was correct they would agree to these obvious recommendations.

They are not unaware of these requests to investigate but they refuse entry - I could say "what have they got to hide?" but we know they answer.

Kristyan BenedictStaff 6 years ago

Syria is in the midst of a vicious sectarian civil war and it is not clear precisely how the children were killed, the UN statement is noncommittal.

Gregory Carlin 6 years ago