Ban Ki-moon: 'Assad has lost all sense of humanity'

UN chief slams Assad for not heeding calls of the int'l community and his people; three-day death toll in Hama, other towns rises to 134.

August 2, 2011 20:46
2 minute read.
Ban Ki-Moon

Ban Ki-Moon 311 Reuters. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Syrian President Bashar Assad has "lost all humanity," United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Tuesday as the UN held talks over the Assad regime's brutal crackdown on protesters, AFP reported.

Reacting to escalated bloodshed in Syria, European powers relaunched a dormant draft UN resolution to condemn Damascus for the violence, circulating a revised text to the Security Council at a meeting on Monday.

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Following the hour-long closed-door meeting, several diplomats said that after months of deadlock over Syria in the council, the fresh violence appeared to be pushing the divided members towards some form of reaction.

But envoys disagreed over whether the 15-nation body should adopt the Western-backed draft resolution or negotiate a less binding statement.

“Since the beginning of this situation, I have issued many statements, I have spoken to President Assad several times, and I have expressed my sincere wish and genuine wish that he should genuinely, genuinely address these issues in a peaceful manner,” Ban was quoted as telling reporters.

Ban added that the situation is "totally unacceptable," noting the attacks in Hama and other towns over the weekend that left over 130 people dead.

“[Assad] must be aware that under international humanitarian law, this is accountable. I believe that he lost all sense of humanity,” Ban was quoted as saying. “He must address this issue, listening to the calls of the international community and more importantly, listening to the aspirations and genuine wishes of his people.”

The UN chief's comments come as the death toll in the Syria's crackdown on the opposition climbed on Tuesday, and tanks continued to pound residential neighborhoods across Hama.

Human rights campaigners said assaults by Assad's forces across Syria overnight and on Monday had killed at least 24 civilians, including 10 in Hama, where troops and tanks began a violent operation to regain control on Sunday.

That brought the total to about 134 dead throughout Syria in the past three days, 90 of them in Hama, according to witnesses, residents and rights campaigners.

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