Last updated: February 16. 2013 4:30PM - 104 Views

Syrian women pray during Laylat Al Qadr, the 27th day of the holy fasting month of Ramadan in font of the Syrian embassy in Amman, Jordan, Wednesday, Aug. 15, 2012. Laylat Al Qadr, the most important prayer of the fasting month, is the night Muslims commemorate the revelation of the first verses of the Quran to their prophet Mohammed through the angel Gabriel. Muslims spend the night in worship and devotion, praying for the souls of the dead. (AP photo/Mohammad Hannon)
Syrian women pray during Laylat Al Qadr, the 27th day of the holy fasting month of Ramadan in font of the Syrian embassy in Amman, Jordan, Wednesday, Aug. 15, 2012. Laylat Al Qadr, the most important prayer of the fasting month, is the night Muslims commemorate the revelation of the first verses of the Quran to their prophet Mohammed through the angel Gabriel. Muslims spend the night in worship and devotion, praying for the souls of the dead. (AP photo/Mohammad Hannon)
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(AP) A U.N. expert panel has concluded that President Bashar Assad's forces and pro-government shabiha fighters perpetrated war crimes and crimes against humanity on Syrian civilians.


The panel appointed by the U.N.'s 47-nation Human Rights Council blames government and allied militia for the killing of more than 100 civilians in the village of Houla in May, nearly half of them children.


It says the murders, unlawful killing, torture, sexual violence and indiscriminate attacks point to involvement of the highest levels of government and forces.


The panel also concluded in its final report Wednesday to the Geneva-based council that anti-government armed groups committed war crimes, including murder, extrajudicial killings and torture, but on a lesser frequency and scale.


Associated Press
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