Syria shootings by rebels condemned

  • Human rights activists have condemned the public shooting of four apparent Assad loyalists by rebels in Syria’s Aleppo city.

    An online video shows the men, including the alleged head of a local militia, lined up against a wall and shot with Kalashnikov rifles.

    Human Rights Watch has said the act is potentially a war crime.

    The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which documents violence by all sides in the conflict, has condemned the “criminal” killings.

    Government forces backed by President Bashar al-Assad have been striving to drive out the Free Syria Army (FSA) rebels from Aleppo, the country's commercial capital, since they launched an assault last month.

    The United Nations mission in Syria reports the rebels in Aleppo are armed with some heavy weapons including tanks.

    According to activists, some 135 people were killed across Syria on Wednesday, though the figures could not be independently verified.

    An estimated 20,000 people have died since the uprising against Assad's government began in March last year.