UN: Libyan attacks on Misrata may be war crimes

April 20, 2011 15:59

GENEVA - The Libyan government's reported use of cluster munitions and heavy weapons in Misrata has caused substantial civilian casualties and may amount to crimes under international law, the United Nations said on Wednesday.

In a statement, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay called for a halt to the siege of Misrata and condemned attacks, including a cluster bomb that exploded last week several hundred metres from the hospital in the western city.

"Under international law, the deliberate targeting of medical facilities is a war crime and the deliberate targeting or reckless endangerment of civilians may also amount to serious violations of international human rights law or international humanitarian law," Pillay, a former UN war crimes judge, said.

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