Human Rights Council Twenty-third session Agenda item 1 Organizational and procedural matters

Resolution adopted by the Human Rights Council

23/1. The deteriorating situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic, and the recent killings in Al-Qusayr The Human Rights Council,

Guided by the Charter of the United Nations,

Having held an urgent debate to discuss the deteriorating situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic, and the recent killings in Al Qusayr, which is currently under siege by the Syrian regime,

Recalling General Assembly resolutions 66/176 of 19 December 2011, 66/253 of 16 February 2012, 66/253B of 3 August 2012, 67/183 of 20 December 2012 and 67/262 of 15 May 2013, Human Rights Council resolutions S-16/1 of 29 April 2011, S-17/1 of 22 August 2011, S-18/1 of 2 December 2011, 19/1 of 1 March 2012, 19/22 of 23 March 2012, 20/22 of 6 July 2012, 21/26 of 28 September 2012 and 22/24 of 22 March 2013, and Security Council resolutions 2042 (2012) of 14 April 2012 and 2043 (2012) of 21 April 2012,

Recalling the press release of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights on 10 May 2013, in which she expressed alarm at reports of major military build-up around the western Syrian town of Al Qusayr, and stated that she feared further atrocities and increasing displacement of the local civilian population,

Reaffirming its strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of the Syrian Arab Republic and to the principles of the Charter,

1. Strongly condemns all violations of international humanitarian law and the widespread and systematic gross violations of human rights and fundamental freedoms by the Syrian authorities and the Government-affiliated militias, such as those violations involving the regime’s use of ballistic missiles and other heavy weapons against civilians in the Syrian Arab Republic, including against the people of Al Qusayr;

∗ The resolutions and decisions adopted by the Human Rights Council will be contained in the report of

the Council on its twenty-third session (A/HRC/23/2), chap. I.

2. Condemns all violence in the Syrian Arab Republic, irrespective of where it comes from, and calls upon all parties to immediately put an end to all forms of violence, including terrorist acts and acts of violence or intimidation that may foment sectarian tensions, also condemns all human rights violations and abuses, and calls upon all parties to comply strictly with their obligations under international law, including international humanitarian law and international human rights law;

3. Calls upon the Syrian authorities to meet their responsibility to protect the Syrian population and to put an immediate end to all attacks against the civilians of Al Qusayr;

4. Stresses the need to ensure accountability for those responsible for the massacre in Al Qusayr, and also stresses that those responsible for the serious violations of international humanitarian law and international human rights law in the Syrian Arab Republic must be held to account; reaffirms that the Syrian people, on the basis of broad, inclusive and credible consultations, should determine, within the framework provided for by international law, the process and mechanisms to achieve justice, reconciliation, truth and accountability for gross violations, as well as reparations and effective remedies for victims, while underlining the relevance of referrals to the appropriate international criminal justice mechanism under appropriate circumstances;

5. Condemns the intervention of foreign combatants fighting on behalf of the Syrian regime in Al Qusayr, and expresses deep concern that their involvement further exacerbates the deteriorating human rights and humanitarian situation, which has a serious negative impact on the region;

6. Demands that the Syrian authorities allow free and unimpeded access by the United Nations and humanitarian agencies to all civilians affected by the violence, especially in Al Qusayr, through all effective routes, including by providing authorization for cross-border humanitarian operations as an urgent priority, and urges all parties to protect medical personnel, facilities and transport as such;

7. Requests the commission of inquiry to urgently conduct a comprehensive, independent and unfettered inquiry into the events in Al Qusayr, and also requests the commission to include the findings of the inquiry in its report to the Human Rights Council at its twenty-fourth session.

8. Decides to remain seized of the matter and to take further action on the situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic.

8th meeting 29 May 2013

[Adopted by a recorded vote of 36 to 1, with 8 abstentions. The voting was as follows: In favour:

Argentina, Austria, Benin, Botswana, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Chile, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Czech Republic, Estonia, Gabon, Germany, Guatemala, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Libya, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritania, Montenegro, Pakistan, Peru, Poland, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Sierra Leone, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, United Arab Emirates, United States of America

Against: Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of)

Abstaining: Angola, Congo, Ecuador, Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, Philippines, Uganda]