Assad will fall sooner than thought: Peres
JERUSALEM / GENEVA
Shimon Peres reads a newspaper during the Ambrosetti workshop in Cernobbio.Syrian President Bashar al-Assad will fall sooner than many people believe, according to Israeli President Shimon Peres.
“I believe that al-Assad is reaching his end,” Peres told heads of foreign missions in Israel at the annual reception that he hosts for diplomats, according to Israeli daily Jerusalem Post. “It will happen sooner than we think.” Peres also told countries that support Syria that it was not, in fact, Syria they were supporting, but al-Assad.
Meanwhile, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called yesterday for all war criminals in Syria to be brought to justice.
“We must ensure that anyone, on any side, who commits war crimes, crimes against humanity or other violations of international human rights or humanitarian law, is brought to justice,” Agence France-Presse quoted Ban as saying in Geneva, where he opened the 21st session of the United Nations Human Rights Council.
“I am deeply troubled by the aerial bombardments of civilians by government forces, by the increasing sectarian tensions, by the deteriorating humanitarian situation and by the apparent choice of both sides to pursue a solution through force rather than dialogue,” he said.
U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay, for her part, said both sides in the Syrian conflict were to blame for human rights abuses.
“The use of heavy weapons by the government and the shelling of populated areas have resulted in high numbers of civilian casualties, mass displacement of civilians inside and outside the country and a devastating humanitarian crisis,” she said.
Pillay also said she was equally concerned about violations by anti-government forces, including murder, extrajudicial execution and torture, as well as the recently increased use of improvised explosive devices.