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UN requests Syria 'torture' photos from AA

Anadolu Agency says it will provide the UN Commission of Inquiry on Syria the photos of torture by the Syrian regime, to include the images as part of findings in its next report

UN requests Syria 'torture' photos from AA

The International Commission of Inquiry on Syria, a UN Human Rights Council Body requested on Thursday to see the photos from Anadolu Agency (AA) depicting torture and starvation inflicted upon eleven thousand Syrians by the regime forces from AA. 

In an e-mail regarding the "Syria war crimes evidence" story published on AA website on January 20 "which the Commission read with great interest", the Commission said it would like to view those materials that support the conclusions in the case.

In response, Anadolu Agency said it is ready to contribute to the Commission’s upcoming reports about the human rights violations committed throughout the Syrian Arab Republic.

The Commission stated that the allegations of torture and killing in Syrian regime's detention centres is a matter they frequently mentioned in their previous reports.

"Indeed, we have determined, based on a threshold of ‘reasonable grounds to believe’, that torture, amounting to a crime against humanity, has occurred inside official Syrian detention centres," said the Commission.

The Commission showed their interest in conducting an interview with the witness who was identified as "Caesar" in the report cited in AA's story.  The Commission ensured that its interviews are confidential and they will never reveal the identity of the witness nor anyone involved in the matter.

If the AA supplies the photographs to the commission, they said they will be able to include such material as part of findings in its next report which is being finalised at the end of January and which would go before the UN Human Rights and Security Councils in March 2014.  

The Commission added they might plan to visit Turkey in mid-February in order to view the materials, if the said deadline of end of January is too short.

- AA to provide UN with the "Syria war crimes" photos it has requested

Anadolu Agency (AA) said on Thursday it can provide the UN's International Commission of Inquiry on Syria with the requested "Syria war crimes evidence" photos it revealed on Monday depicting torture and starvation inflicted upon eleven thousand Syrians by the regime forces.

 AA said "Besides the aforementioned photos, Anadolu Agency can contribute to the commission by providing its own contents – news, photos and images - gathered by our reporters."

The Agency also said it will allow its reporters to join interviews with the commission "regarding the human rights violations they witnessed in Syria during their duties if it is requested."

AA also welcomed the Commission to view the documents in Turkey in order to complete the report for UN Human Rights and Security Councils in March 2014. "We hope this cooperation will help to cease the suffering of many victims in Syria and Anadolu Agency is ready to provide any assistance within possibility," concluded AA.

The International Commission of Inquiry on Syria was founded on 22 August 2011 by the UN Human Rights Council. Up till now, the Commission has produced six reports and four periodic updates, exposing human rights violations committed throughout the Syrian Arab Republic based on interviews with over 2,500 witnesses and victims.

 The AA published a report on Monday at 9 p.m. Ankara time (19:00 GMT) under the by line of AA Director General and Chairman of the Board Kemal Ozturk accompanied by photographs, titled “Syria war crimes evidence" which resounded across the globe after being published. The report consists of examples from among 55,000 photographs of 11,000 bodies taken over a two year period by an Assad regime officer. The report and photos document the war crimes committed by the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the civil war racking the country for almost three years.

Anadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.
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