Text: H.Res.687 — 112th Congress (2011-2012)All Bill Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (06/15/2012)


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[Congressional Bills 112th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
[H. Res. 687 Introduced in House (IH)]

112th CONGRESS
  2d Session
H. RES. 687

  Calling for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to be tried before the 
  International Criminal Court for committing crimes against humanity.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                             June 15, 2012

     Mr. Israel (for himself and Mr. Cole) submitted the following 
   resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs

_______________________________________________________________________

                               RESOLUTION


 
  Calling for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to be tried before the 
  International Criminal Court for committing crimes against humanity.

Whereas the United Nations estimates that since the uprising in Syria began in 
        January 2011, more than 10,000 people consisting mostly of civilians 
        have been killed and tens of thousands have been displaced;
Whereas under the command of President Assad, Syrian government forces and 
        shabiha have been accused of gross human rights violations including 
        heavy shelling of civilian areas, widespread pillaging and the burning 
        of homes, denial of basic human needs such as food, water, and medical 
        care, mass torture and arrests, unlawful detention, and brutal 
        execution-style killings;
Whereas President Assad failed to adhere to the Arab League peace deal agreed to 
        in November 2011, that called for withdrawing Syrian security forces, 
        releasing political prisoners, and beginning dialogue with the 
        opposition;
Whereas President Assad has so far failed to implement the six-point peace plan 
        orchestrated by Special Envoy to Syria Kofi Annan that went into effect 
        in April 2012, which calls for an end to the violence, beginning of 
        political dialogue, access for humanitarian agencies to provide needed 
        aid, release of detainees, freedom of movement throughout the country 
        for journalists, and the right to demonstrate peacefully;
Whereas the United States has implemented a series of sanctions through five 
        Executive Orders pertaining to the situation in Syria;
Whereas the United Nations Human Rights Council has held four Special Sessions, 
        issued two reports of the Independent International Commission of 
        Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic, and adopted five resolutions 
        devoted to the situation in Syria;
Whereas the United Nations Security Council has adopted two resolutions 
        authorizing an advance team to monitor the ceasefire in Syria and a 
        United Nations Supervision Mission in Syria (UNSMIS);
Whereas the United Nations General Assembly has adopted two resolutions 
        regarding human rights and the situation in Syria;
Whereas the situation in Syria continues to deteriorate despite such actions by 
        the international community;
Whereas in May and June 2012, massacres have occurred, including the killing of 
        men, women, and children in villages such as Houla and Qubeir;
Whereas, on June 7, 2012, referring to the massacres in Houla and Qubeir, the 
        United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights stated that ``These 
        killings are indicative of a pattern of widespread or systematic attacks 
        against civilian populations, and may amount to crimes against humanity 
        and other international crimes.'';
Whereas, on November 23, 2011, the United Nations Independent International 
        Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic expressed its concern 
        ``that crimes against humanity have been committed in different 
        locations in the Syrian Arab Republic during the period under review.'';
Whereas, on February 22, 2011, the United Nations Independent International 
        Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic found in its second 
        report that after further review, ``a reliable body of evidence exists 
        that, consistent with other verified circumstances, provides reasonable 
        grounds to believe that particular individuals, including commanding 
        officers and officials at the highest levels of Government, bear 
        responsibility for crimes against humanity and other gross human rights 
        violations.'';
Whereas the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has called on the 
        United Nations Security Council to consider referring the situation of 
        Syria to the International Criminal Court; and
Whereas the International Criminal Court is an independent body whose mission is 
        to try individuals for crimes within its jurisdiction, including crimes 
        against humanity, war crimes, and genocide: Now, therefore, be it
    Resolved, That the House of Representatives--
            (1) strongly condemns the ongoing violence and gross human 
        rights violations carried out by Syrian government forces under 
        direction of President Bashar al-Assad;
            (2) expresses its support for the people of Syria seeking 
        peaceful democratic change; and
            (3) calls on the United Nations Security Council, based on 
        evidence that crimes against humanity have been perpetrated by 
        Syrian government forces, to refer the situation of Syria to 
        the International Criminal Court.
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