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Angelina Jolie Visits Syrian Refugees


Manfrag, TAG – With Syria's refugee crisis reaching epic proportions, actress and U.N. ambassador Angelina Jolie visited displaced residents Tuesday at a camp in Jordan.
The trip draws attention to the plight of the hundreds of thousands of Syrians who have fled their country during 18 months of relentless bloodshed. More than 81,000 refugees have escaped to Jordan, and many more have fled to neighboring Turkey, Lebanon and Iraq.
"I am grateful to Jordan and the border countries for saving the lives (of those) who are dying in Syria. It's an extraordinary thing," Jolie said at the Zaatari Refugee Camp in Mafraq.
She relayed horror stories of what children said they witnessed, such as body parts that had been pulled apart "like chicken."
"We encourage the international community to support the people here until one day they go back home," Jolie said.
But the flood of refugees has tested the capacity of neighboring countries.
"Jordan has already reached its limit in absorbing the refugee influx, and what is needed now is to build more refugee camps for the Syrian refugees," Jordanian Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh said. "We have limited means, but this is the land of the good people and we will share with them whatever we have, no matter how little is."
In other developments:
The new normal in Syria's civil war involves mass killings, torture and sexual violence, U.N. human rights chief Navi Pillay said Monday.
"Thousands have been killed, thousands more injured. As we speak, civilians -- including children -- are continuing to be injured and killed in Syria virtually every hour of every day," Pillay said.
More than 2.5 million people across Syria have been directly affected by violence since a popular uprising against President Bashar al-Assad began in March 2011. The al-Assad family has ruled Syria for more than 40 years.
What started as peaceful protests last year led to a fierce government crackdown, an armed rebel uprising and a civil war with no end in sight.
The crisis is compounded by the government's escalating use of helicopters and fighter jets in civilian areas, with indiscriminate attacks on urban areas where civilians were likely trapped, Pillay said.
But she said human rights violations have been committed by both the government and rebels and warned that both parties would ultimately face legal consequences for their actions.
"Both government forces and opposition forces deploy snipers who target civilians," Pillay said. "As time has passed, opposition forces have also been increasingly implicated in kidnappings and abductions, including of foreigners perceived as being government supporters."
"Opposition forces should be under no illusion that they will be immune from prosecution," she added, reiterating her call for the U.N. Security Council to refer human rights violations to the International Criminal Court.
On the ground
Opposition activists reported a wave of fresh violence in areas well versed in attacks.
In Hama province, regimes forces raided and looted homes amid heavy gunfire, the opposition Local Coordination Committees of Syria said Tuesday.
In Homs, regime forces renewed heavy shelling by tanks and mortar, the group said.
And in Daraa, the birthplace of anti-Assad demonstrations last year, the LCC reported "heavy and indiscriminate gunfire by regime's forces."
State-run media, meanwhile, reported Tuesday that 30 civilians were killed in a "terrorist bombing" Monday in front of an Aleppo hospital. The government said children were among those killed.[]

Source link: http://edition.cnn.com/2012/09/11/world/meast/syria-civil-war/
Angelina Jolie Visits Syrian Refugees Angelina Jolie Visits Syrian Refugees Reviewed by Nurdin Hasan on September 11, 2012 Rating: 5

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