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Legal Matters

Former War-Crimes Prosecutor Criticizes UN Panel On Syria, Says She Will Resigns

Carla Del Ponte, the former prominent war-crimes prosecutor, says she is quitting a United Nations commission investigating human rights violations in Syria, claiming it does absolutely nothing.

"I am frustrated, I give up," Del Ponte told the Swiss newspaper Blick in an interview published on August 6. "I have written my letter of resignation and will send it in the next few days."

"The states in the Security Council don't want justice," Del Ponte said. "I can't any longer be part of this commission which simply doesn't do anything."

Del Ponte, who has served on the commission for five years, criticized Syrian President Bashar al-Assad as well as the opposition fighting his rule in the six-year civil war.

Del Ponte served as prosecutor for the international war-crimes tribunals that investigated atrocities in Rwanda and Yugoslavia.

She said the crimes in Syria are worse than she had ever seen in Rwanda or Yugoslavia, and she criticized the Security Council for failing to appoint a war-crimes panel for the Syrian war.

Figured released on July 16 by the Syrian Observatory show that the six-year civil war in the country has killed more than 330,000 people, including 99,617 civilians.

The United States and Turkey support varying rebel groups fighting against the government of President Bashar al-Assad, who is backed by Russia and Iran.

Copyright (c) 2015. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036.

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