News / Middle East

UN Says Syria Death Toll Nearing 70,000

A Free Syrian Army fighter carries his weapon as he walks past damaged buildings in the Arabeen neighborhood of Damascus, Syria, Feb. 12, 2013.A Free Syrian Army fighter carries his weapon as he walks past damaged buildings in the Arabeen neighborhood of Damascus, Syria, Feb. 12, 2013.
x
A Free Syrian Army fighter carries his weapon as he walks past damaged buildings in the Arabeen neighborhood of Damascus, Syria, Feb. 12, 2013.
A Free Syrian Army fighter carries his weapon as he walks past damaged buildings in the Arabeen neighborhood of Damascus, Syria, Feb. 12, 2013.
VOA News
The United Nations says the death toll from nearly two years of fighting in Syria is nearing 70,000.

U.N. Human Rights commissioner Navi Pillay made the announcement in a statement to the U.N. Security Council on Tuesday. Pillay announced just last month that the toll had reached 60,000.

The Security Council has been deadlocked on a response to the Syrian crisis, with permanent members Russia and China vetoing three resolutions against the Syrian government.

Meanwhile, Syrian activists say rebels opposed to President Bashar al-Assad have captured a military air base in northern Syria, a day after seizing control of the country's largest hydro-electric dam.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Tuesday the rebels were in control of the al-Jarrah air base in Aleppo province. News services said the rebels seized for the first time a fleet of deployable warplanes, including MiG fighter jets.

The opposition Local Coordinating Committees said the air base was taken after fierce clashes with government forces. The group also reported fighting Tuesday at another military airport in Aleppo.

  • A Free Syrian Army fighter takes position inside a house during clashes with forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad in Damascus, February 12, 2013.
  • Syrian refugee children look out of their classroom window at Al- Zaatri refugee camp, in the Jordanian city of Mafraq, near the border with Syria, February 12, 2013.
  • Relatives of Ali Sille, one of the 13 people killed by an explosion at a crossing on Turkey's border with Syria, mourn at his grave in the town of Reyhanli, Turkey, February 12, 2013.
  • This image taken from video shows Syrian rebels at Jarrah airfield in Aleppo province, February 12, 2013.
  • A fighter from the Free Syrian Army uses a shotgun to fire a grenade at Syrian Army soldiers in the Arabeen neigborhood of Damascus, February 9, 2013.
  • Garbage fills a street in Aleppo, February 11, 2013.
  • A Syrian refugee woman and her child sit in her makeshift tent in the town of Viransehir, southeast Turkey, February 10, 2013.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and AFP.
 

You May Like

Video Indiana Controversy Points to Divergent Notions of Religious Freedom

Gay-marriage opponents are looking for ways to maintain their beliefs in face of changing culture, one writer says More

UNICEF Denies North Korean Measles Outbreak

Agency dismisses Russian media report after government, WHO assurances More

Turkey Seen Taking Harder Stance Against Militant Kurds

Stance comes as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is being seen as moving closer to generals More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Anonymous
February 12, 2013 5:45 PM
Bashar al Assad should be facing THOUSANDS of murder charges, and genocide charges by the ICC. Unless of course the Syrian people deal with Bashar accordingly. However there is word that Bashar al Assad is hiding on a Russian ship in the Mediterranean Sea. So all the more reason for the ICC to get involved now. Anyone housing Bashar al Asssad or protecting him from prosecution should face severe consequences.

by: Michael from: USA
February 12, 2013 9:59 AM
The catastrophe is important in that it sets in mind the image of the conflict-torn MiddleEast. All regional conflicts are related on this note: to move past conflict into the global marketplace and this should come into view by 2015 AD

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Indiana Controversy Highlights Divergent Meanings of Religious Freedomi
X
Jerome Socolovsky
April 01, 2015 1:41 AM
Indiana’s state government has triggered a nationwide controversy by approving a law that critics say is aimed at allowing discrimination against gays and lesbians. The controversy stems from divergent notions of religious freedom in America. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Indiana Controversy Highlights Divergent Meanings of Religious Freedom

Indiana’s state government has triggered a nationwide controversy by approving a law that critics say is aimed at allowing discrimination against gays and lesbians. The controversy stems from divergent notions of religious freedom in America. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Nigerians Welcome Buhari's Return to Power

Crowds of jubilant Nigerians nationwide have celebrated the return to power of former military ruler Muhammadu Buhari. The retired army general won this year's presidential election with more than 2 million votes more than incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan. Buhari's supporters hope he can strengthen the country's economy and security once he takes office in late May. Zlatica Hoke has this story.
Video

Video Report: State of Black America a 'Tale of Two Nations'

The National Urban League has described this year's "State of Black America" report as a "tale of two nations." The group's annual report, released earlier this month (March), found that under an equality index African Americans had only 72% parity compared to whites in areas such as education, economics, health, social justice and civic engagement. It’s a gap that educators and students at Brooklyn’s Medgar Evers College are looking to close. VOA's Daniela Schrier reports from the school.
Video

Video Film Tells Story of Musicians in Mali Threatened by Jihadists

At this year's annual South by Southwest film and music festival in Austin, Texas, some musicians from Mali were on hand to promote a film about how their lives were upturned by jihadists who destroyed ancient treasures in the city of Timbuktu and prohibited anyone from playing music under threat of death. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin, some are afraid to return to their hometowns even though the jihadists are no longer in control there.
Video

Video Gamma Ray Observatory to Open Soon in Mexico

American and Mexican scientists have completed construction of the world's largest gamma ray observatory, situated high in central Mexico’s Sierra Negra Mountain. The observatory's huge array of water-based detectors will soon start discovering secrets about black holes and supernovas. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Trials Underway in West Africa

Ebola has claimed the lives of more than 10,000 people in West Africa. Since last summer, researchers have rushed to get anti-Ebola vaccines into clinical trials. While it's too early to say that any of the potential vaccines work, some scientists say they are seeing strong results from some of the studies. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Tourism is a multi-billion dollar industry in the Philippines. Close to five million foreign visitors traveled there last year, perhaps lured by the country’s tropical beaches. But Jason Strother reports from Manila that the country hopes to entice more travelers to stay indoors and spend money inside new casinos.
Video

Video Civilian Casualties Push Men to Join Rebels in Ukraine

The continued fighting in eastern Ukraine and the shelling of civilian neighborhoods seem to be pushing more men to join the separatist fighters. Many of the new recruits are residents of Ukraine made bitter by new grievances, as well as old. VOA's Patrick Wells reports.
Video

Video Islamic State Prisoners Talk of Curiosity, God, Regret

Islamic State fighter, a prisoner of Kurdish YPG forces, asked his family asking for forgiveness: "I destroyed myself and I destroyed them along with me." The Syrian youth was one of two detainees who spoke to VOA’s Kurdish Service about the path they chose; their names have been changed and identifying details obscured. VOA's Zana Omer reports.
Video

Video Germanwings Findings Raise Issue of Psychological Testing for Pilots

More is being discovered about the co-pilot in the crash of Germanwings Flight 9525 in the French Alps. Investigators say he was hiding a medical condition, raising questions about the mental qualifications of pilots. VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.

VOA Blogs

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More