Red Cross: Syria in civil war

  • The Red Cross (ICRC) has declared that the ongoing conflict in Syria is now a civil war.

    The change in status means combatants will now be subject to the Geneva Conventions and expose them to war crimes prosecutions.

    Previously, the Red Cross had regarded only the areas around Idlib, Homs and Hama as war zones.

    The ICRC, which oversees the Geneva Conventions, said fighting had now spread beyond the three hotspots.

    Last month, the United Nations’ head of peacekeeping, Herve Ladsous, also stated Syria was in a state of civil war.

    An estimated 16,000 people have been killed since the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad's regime began in March 2011.