Norway thanks the independent international commission of inquiry for presenting a comprehensive report. We align our self with the statement made by Austria.
Norway remains extremely concerned about the continued precarious human rights situation in Syria. The updated report of the independent international commission of inquiry describes how the Syrian state not only has failed in its responsibility to protect its population, but has instead committed widespread, systematic and gross human rights violations, that may amount to crimes against humanity, with the apparent knowledge and consent of the highest levels of the state.
As was the case with the Commission's last report, this update makes for appalling reading. The report describes how small children, women and other unarmed civilans have lost their lives, as result of targeted attacks by snipers and shelling of densely populated areas. The report furthermore describes attacks on human rights defenders and the media, as well as arbitrary arrests, torture, abductions and enforced disappearances. More than 500 children have reportedly been killed since March 2011, and children continue to be arbitrarily arrested and tortured while in detention.
Moreover, reports from other sources suggest that human rights violations carried out by the Syrian authorities have escalated significantly in the time following the publication of the present update.
Norway endorses and supports the the call by the High Commissioner for Human Rights to the UN Security Council to refer the situation in Syria to the prosecutor of the ICC. Individual criminal responsibility must be established. We cannot accept impunity for these violations.
Norway supports the resolution to extend the mandate of the commission of inquiry established by the Human Rights Council.