• The New York Times

Syrian Mass Graves Discovered

March 16, 2022

Satellite image, September 2019 [Image Source: Maxar Technologies, via Google Earth]

Cited article by Ben Hubbard and Marlise Simons, The New York Times


HRRC hopes the identification of mass graves in Syria can serve as evidence of war crimes and crimes against humanity carried out by the Syrian government. President Bashar al-Assad and those involved in the killings must be held accountable for their actions.


Article Summary


Two sites believed to be mass graves have been located in Syria. These graves are allegedly the dumping site for thousands of Syrians who were held in detention centers under President Bashar al-Assad during the civil war. Human rights groups suspect that these governmental detention centers conducted systematic torture and killings of detainees. These mass graves could provide evidence of war crimes carried out by the Assad regime.


Assad activated security forces in the aftermath of 2011 to target dissenting protestors, activists, and others, and imprisoned them in detention facilities. The U.S. Treasury Department stated that at least 14,000 detainees were tortured to death. However, over 130,000 people disappeared into the facilities and are presumed dead.