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Will Syria Go on the Offensive at The Hague?

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Moreover, unilateral US sanctions, without the imprimatur of the United  Nations are blatantly illegal under International Law because they are in fact  multilateral and impose penalties on any country which opposes the  sanctions or does not choose to participate in them;

The US led sanctions amount to an Act of War given their effects including hardships on the general public and that Syria therefore has a legal right to Self-Defense.

The US led sanctions, given their design and intent, constitute acts of aggression against Syria in violation of Article 2 (4) of the UN charter.

The indisputable facts of the US led sanctions case warrant the imposition  by the ICJ of Restraining Orders designed to prevent any type of blockade or  no-fly zones in Syria and the immediate cessation of the imposition of  further economic sanctions against Syria, and also their efforts of securing  more sanctions against Syria at the United Nations Security Council. The Restraining Orders, under the umbrella of Interim Measures of Protection,  would presumably also seek to prohibit the US and its allies from the Persian  Gulf region and elsewhere, from advocating aggressive military actions  against Syria, including supplying funding, weapons, and jihadists, as well  as Western "Special Forces" currently pouring into Syria from its northern  border with Turkey and to negotiate with the Syrian government in  good faith to end the current crisis.

Syria can legitimately claim, and would presumably argue at the ICJ and other international forums that the bi-lateral or multilateral economic sanctions, led by the US and its Gulf allies, Qatar and Saudi Arabia, are  illegal, indeed criminal due to their assault on international humanitarian  law and required state practice.

Syria could successfully argue, according to a recent survey of international lawyers conducted in Brussels and The Hague, as well as within Syria's  Maison d'Avocats, that the US led sanctions violate the international law  principle of Non-intervention in the internal affairs of UN member states and  that the stewards of these sanctions could themselves be subject to  international sanctions plus compensatory and punitive damages for the  benefit of their victims.

In summary, as Germany's Green Party, and increasingly, legal scholars and human rights  organizations generally are insisting, sanctions against Syria's civilian  population fundamentally violate international law.

Should NATO sets up a no-fly zone and were to launch airstrikes against Damascus, it can and should immediately be sued at The Hague and if the situation deteriorates NATO can and should be held to account for targeting Alawites and Christians on the basis of the 1948 UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. All participating countries, 142 to date, are obliged to prevent and punish actions of genocide in war and in peacetime. Article 2 of the Convention defines genocide as any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, elements of a national, ethnic, racial, or religious group including killing members of the group, causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group, deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part.

Despite Syria's strong case on both the facts and the law, and the diversity in structure and composition of the International Court of Justice, the International Tribunal has a few times over the years been criticized for  favoring established powers. Under articles 3 and 9 of the ICJ Statute, the judges on the ICJ should represent "the main forms of civilization and principal legal systems of the world." This definition suggests that the ICJ does not represent the interests of developing countries. Nevertheless, the World Courts record has been by and large exemplary in applying principles, standards and rules of international law both in contested cases and advisory opinions and Syria has an excellent opportunity to protect its citizens, thwart US and Israeli designs on the region, and advance international accountability -- all to the inestimable benefit of all people and nations.

Syria, which the US and Israel and their allies are today working to keep  off balance and on the defensive diplomatically, should consider immediately  filing an application with the International Court of Justice, and use all other  available international legal, political and humanitarian tribunals, to directly  challenge and boldly confront the US led sanctions campaign against its  people. The Syrian Arab Republic, by taking the offensive at the World Court  and elsewhere, will help relieve the enormous pressures on its civilians and  advance the principles, standards and rules of international law--for the  benefit of all mankind.

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Hoping Syria, a Sovereign and Independent country,... by jean labrek on Monday, Dec 31, 2012 at 6:30:31 PM
The strategy of the US and NATO regarding Libya wa... by Peter Duveen on Monday, Dec 31, 2012 at 8:30:18 PM
I fail to understand, why Nations, especially smal... by Eddy Schmid on Monday, Dec 31, 2012 at 9:56:24 PM
I couldn't agree more with everything you have sai... by Sheila Coombes on Wednesday, Jan 2, 2013 at 12:05:14 PM