Kinzinger leads congressional call for U.S. assistance in investigating, prosecuting Syrian war crimes

In a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday, U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) called for the investigation and prosecution of Syrian war crimes.

The letter called for Kerry to commit funding to international investigations and prosecutions of Syrian war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide.

“Unlike many of the atrocities of the 20th century, the crimes stemming from the Syrian war have been meticulously documented,” Kinzinger wrote. “The compelling nature of this evidence demonstrates a machinery of death unprecedented by any conflict since World War II. Even with the promise of a ‘cessation of hostilities,’ these crimes continue apace, unmoved by international condemnation or strict action.”

A bipartisan group of 10 legislators signed the letter, including U.S. Reps. Bob Dold (R-IL), Ryan Costello (R-PA), Carlos Curbelo (R-FL) and Susan Brooks (R-IN).

Kinzinger noted in the letter that “traditional avenues” for accountability are unavailable for Syria because of political and logistical challenges. He added, however, that options exist because of the documentation of crimes.

“Given the wealth of documentation on the crimes committed during this Syrian war, it is very possible to launch investigations and prosecutions into national courts on these heinous atrocities,” Kinzinger wrote. “We owe it to the innocent people of Syria to bring justice against the Assad regime and to prosecute those responsible for genocide. I’m grateful to my colleagues for signing this letter and joining me in urging the administration to step up and take action.”  

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