News / Middle East

HRW: Syria Must Stop Illegal Demolitions

This combination of two satellite images released by Human Rights Watch shows the Masha al-Arb’een neighborhood in Hama, Syria on Sept. 28, 2012, left, and on Oct. 13, 2012.
This combination of two satellite images released by Human Rights Watch shows the Masha al-Arb’een neighborhood in Hama, Syria on Sept. 28, 2012, left, and on Oct. 13, 2012.
VOA News
Human Rights Watch is calling on the Syrian government to make a commitment during peace talks with the opposition to end what the group says are illegal demolitions.

In a report released on Thursday, Human Rights Watch detailed demolitions in the central city of Hama and areas in and around Damascus during 2012 and 2013.

It said the affected neighborhoods are widely considered opposition strongholds, and that the demolitions "appeared to intentionally punish the civilian population."

The group based the report on satellite imagery analysis and interviews with witnesses and people whose houses were razed. It says the demolitions covered the equivalent of 200 football fields, including multi-story apartment buildings.

Human Rights Watch wants the government to compensate those who lost homes.

The report cited explanations from government officials and pro-government media saying the demolitions were carried out because of illegal constructions or urban planning efforts, but said witnesses and other officials linked the demolitions to the ongoing violence.

Satellite Images of Destruction in Wadi al-Jouz, Hama in 2013

You May Like

Obama: Alaskans Feel Signs of Climate Change

They're seeing bigger storm surges as sea ice melts, more wildfires, erosion of glaciers, shorelines More

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

Magical Photo Slides Show Native Americans in Late 1800s

Walter McClintock spent 20 years photographing the Blackfoot Indians and their vanishing culture at the dawn of the modern age More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: TheAZCowBoy from: Tombstone, AZ.
February 02, 2014 4:29 PM
OMG! Voice of America now censores comments that might be so brave (honest?) as to call the UNITED SNAKES (US/Israel/NATO) the biggest threat to world peace (piece?) in the new millennium?!

Psst: RU and HRW currently supporting the UNITED SNAKES (and terrorist Saudi prince Bandar) who supplied Chemical Weapons to the 'rebel's' in Syria?

Shoo LQQKS like it!'

Psst: You are as corrupt as the Jewish 'Bank of America,' mafia, U related?

by: Anonymous
February 02, 2014 2:53 AM
The above argument is a political construct designed to produce a pre-determined result. A guerrilla war is one fought by non-military combatants. The 'civilians', as Human Rights Watch calls them, are the fighters. The Syrian government is therefore getting rid of them. I'm sure they'd like them all to flee to New York. In the good old days, Genghis Khan or Timur the Lame would have killed the lot. However we're much nicer, these days.

by: Anonymous
January 31, 2014 2:30 AM
I don't understand, assad claims it is all about terrorism, but what he in fact is doing IS terrorism.

The definition of Terrorism:
The use of violence and intimidation in the pursuit of political aims.

He wants to rule the country by force rather than the people wanting him. He is TRYING to take the country hostage. The only people that can help the Syrian people is the International Community to go after assad and force him to face the International Criminal Court. Until this happens more and more genocide.
In Response

by: TheAZCowBoy from: Tombstone, AZ
February 02, 2014 4:18 PM
Only a fool would move on the lies and half-truths of the UNITED SNAKES (US/Israel/NATO) buddies over at HRW. (Note: Also, when you are attacking a 'rats nest' of the UNITED SNAKES enemies 'rebel/mercenary' forces who are holding the native population hostage - you are not committing war crime - you are liberating them!)
As for the definition of the word 'Terrorism.' This is when a 'bully' <imperialistic generally> nation sails across the sea with its best trained killers (Seal 6 types?) and its best high-tech weapons (F-16s, Apache Helicopters and Predators) and attempts to blungeon this (generally) tiny impotent nation as it rapes it of its strategic resources, Oil/Gas, Land & Water <Israel> and then defends its terroristic war crimes by calling that nations 'Minutemen/Taliban' (defending their country with old obsolete Vietnam era AK-47's and RPG-7 grenade launchers) using alot of guts in defending their country' against imperialistic terrorists - US!

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs