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U.N. says Syrian children used as human shields

Tuesday, June 12, 2012 - 01:35

June 12 - WARNING GRAPHIC CONTENT - Amateur video appears to show heavy shelling in Homs and children victims in Aleppo as U.N. monitors say rebel strongholds have come under attack. Deborah Gembara reports.

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*****STORY CONTAINS GRAPHIC IMAGES***** It is a city on fire. Dark skies over Homs in this latest video posted to a social media website as UN monitors reported government helicopters were firing on the city. Blood in the northern city of Aleppo and more casualties. Reuters is unable to independently verify the content of this video which was posted as the UN announced it is adding Syria to its "list of shame"--- compiled of countries that kill, recruit or sexually assault children. The U.N. Special Representative for Children And Armed Conflict Radhika Coomaraswamy. SOUNDBITE: U.N. Special Representative Of The Secretary-General For Children And Armed Conflict Radhika Coomaraswamy saying: "I must say something that really. . . there's been extraordinary violence against children in Syria, because it's not only the killing and maiming which we see in crossfire, or the sexual violence and recruitment of youths that we find in other conflicts, but we have, as you know, I sent a technical team out to the refugee camps to take affidavits and testimony, and we have children as young as 14-years old in detention being tortured by government forces with marks visibly on their bodies. We have seen children, they've described to my technical team, of being beaten, of being scarred by severed bones and whipped with electrical cables. Cases of sexual torture were also recorded against these children. So the torture of children and detention is something quite horrific." She added that in one village, military personnel traveling in a bus placed children against the windows of the vehicle, to be used as human shields. Deborah Gembara, Reuters

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U.N. says Syrian children used as human shields

Tuesday, June 12, 2012 - 01:35

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