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International commission says militants intentionally terrorized civilians in Aleppo

March 01, 16:52 UTC+3 GENEVA

Throughout the siege of eastern Aleppo, armed groups continuously shelled western Aleppo using mostly unguided and imprecise weaponry, the report claims

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© AP Photo/Hassan Ammar

GENEVA, March 1. /TASS/. Armed groups intentionally terrorized the civilian population in Aleppo by shelling residential areas during the battle for the city, the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Syria said in a report dubbed Special Inquiry into the Events in Aleppo.

The report, compiled in view of the 34th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council, is dedicated to the events that took place in Aleppo in 2016 (July-December).

"Throughout the siege of eastern Aleppo, armed groups continuously shelled western Aleppo using mostly unguided and imprecise weaponry, such as improvised rockets and mortars," the report says. "One of the most commonly used weapons were so-called ‘hell canons’. The nature of the weapons used and the absence of a military presence in the majority of cases reviewed terrorized residents of western Aleppo in violation of the international humanitarian law principle of distinction. These attacks therefore amount to the war crime of indiscriminate attacks against civilian population," the report adds.

The report "was prepared on the basis of 291 interviews, including those conducted remotely with residents of Aleppo city and governorate, and interviews conducted in person in the region and in Geneva." The Commission also "collected, reviewed and analyzed satellite imagery, photographs, videos and medical records."

The Commission claims to have "obtained a reliable body of information to conclude that there are reasonable grounds to believe the incidents occurred as described, and that violations were committed by the warring party identified."

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