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Syria opposition urges binding UN resolution after massacre

Last modified: 13 Jul 2012 09:45

Syria's main opposition alliance on Friday urged the UN Security Council to pass a binding resolution against Damascus following reports by activists that regime forces massacred at least 150 villagers.

"To stop this bloody madness which threatens the entity of Syria, as well as peace and the security in the region and in the world, requires an urgent and sharp resolution of the Security Council under Chapter VII (of the UN Charter) which protects the Syrian people," the Syrian National Council said.

Chapter VII allows for punitive measures against regimes considered a threat to the peace, including economic sanctions and military intervention.

Rights activists and monitors said Syrian troops with tanks and helicopters on Thursday slaughtered more than 150 people in Treimsa village, in the central province of Hama.

"We expect members of the Security Council to assume total responsibility to protect defenceless Syrians against these shameful crimes," said the SNC, which added that the latest killings ranked "among the more infamous genocides of the Syrian regime."

Separately, Syria's Muslim Brotherhood, a member of the SNC, said peace envoy Kofi Annan and Syrian allies Iran and Russia must through their inaction shoulder the blame for the killings.

"We don't consider the monster Bashar as being solely responsible for this heinous crime... but (also) Kofi Annan, the Russians and the Iranians and all countries which pretend to be guardians of peace and stability in the world but who remain silent," the Brotherhood said in a statement.

The slaughter, the Brotherhood added, ranked among the "great massacres of the century" including those at Sabra and Shatila in Lebanon in 1982 and Srebrenica in 1995.

UN-Arab League Syrian envoy Annan has been sharply criticised by Syria's opposition in exile and activists on the ground, who accuse him of treating the victim and aggressor in the country's brutal conflict on the same terms.

They also accuse him of seeking to placate Iran. More than four months on from his appointment, Annan has proved powerless to end the violence that monitors say has cost 17,000 lives, mostly civilians, since the anti-Assad uprising broke out in March 2011, at first with peaceful protests.