Syria is burning bodies to hide proof of mass killings

US: Syria is burning bodies to hide proof of mass killings

US: Syria is burning bodies to hide proof of mass killings

Donald Trump's administration has accused Bashar al-Assad of burning the dead bodies in a massive, specially built furnace in a prison complex ouside the capital Damascus.

Jones said that the Assad regime kills up to 50 prisoners each week, and that after the bodies were burned, they were buried in a common grave there.

In his briefing, Jones answered this defense indirectly, saying the alleged crematorium "could dispose of detainees' remains with little evidence" once they had been hanged or otherwise killed.

"We believe that the building of a crematorium is an effort to cover up the extent of mass murders taking place in Saydnaya prison", Stuart Jones, the top United States diplomat for West Asia, told reporters.

Satellite images provided by the State Department shows a prison complex that has been modified to host a crematorium. One photo shows the snow melting on the area of the building where they believe the device is located.

Numerous bodies are then burned in the crematorium "to cover up the extent of mass murders taking place", said Stuart Jones, the top USA diplomat for the Middle East, accusing Assad's government of sinking "to a new level of depravity".

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The United States accused Syria on Monday of executing thousands of imprisoned political opponents and burning their bodies in a crematorium to hide the evidence.

"Beginning in 2013, the Syrian regime modified a building within the Saydnaya complex to support what we believe is a crematorium", said Jones, now an acting assistant secretary of state. "The regime must stop all attacks on civilian and opposition forces".

Jones also had harsh words for Syria's allies, saying that as the Syrian regime continued to commit atrocities, it did so "seemingly with the unconditional support from Russian Federation and Iran".

The Syrian civil war has now claimed over 400,000 lives since it started six years ago. The evidence on the crematorium was assembled through local non-governmental organization groups, intelligence community assessments and press reporting, he said.

While the USA has long condemned Russian Federation for supporting Assad's regime, President Donald Trump's administration also has expressed interest in working with Russian Federation to combat Islamic State terrorists in Syria.

The Trump administration hit a Syrian air base with a missile strike last month in retaliation for the regime's deadly chemical attack in Idlib province - a unilateral strike that prompted a skirmish of words between US and Russian officials. But "I would not say that they mapped out a specific way forward on how to address the issue of Syrian atrocities, or even how to move forward on the Geneva process" on the eve of the next round of yearslong United Nations efforts to bring representatives of Assad and the rebels to the negotiating table due to begin today.

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