UN: 80% of Houla Victims Were Executed

US, other countries kick out Syrian diplomats, envoys
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted May 29, 2012 6:57 AM CDT
Updated May 29, 2012 9:41 AM CDT
UN: 80% of Houla Victims Were Executed
This frame grab made from an amateur video provided by Syrian activists on Monday, May 28, 2012, purports to show the massacre in Houla on May 25.   (AP Photo/Amateur Video via AP video)

(Newser) – If you thought the details coming out of Houla couldn't get any worse, brace yourself: The UN today reported that more than 80% of the 108 dead were executed. Less than 20 were killed by artillery fire, according to a rep for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, who explained that the stats are based on research done by UN monitors that has been backed up by other sources, reports the AP. "Most of the victims were summarily executed in two separate incidents. At this point it looks like entire families were shot in their houses," he revealed.

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A number of countries getting tough in response to Friday's massacre:

  • Australia today ordered two diplomats, including the most senior Syrian diplomat in the country, to leave within 72 hours, reports the AP.
  • Francois Hollande announced that Syria's ambassador in Paris was also being booted from his country, and noted that the decision followed discussions with David Cameron and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, reports the AP.
  • So it's no surprise that Britain is expelling three Syrian diplomats; Germany, Spain, and Canada have revealed they will do the same.
  • A few hours later, the US joined in. Though Syria hasn't had an ambassador in the US since 2011, the State Department announced that the charge d'affaires at the Syrian Embassy has been given 72 hours to leave, reports the AP.
(Read more Syria stories.)

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