Syria Mass-Reprisal Risks Grow as Conflict Lengthens: Ban

Syria’s civil war may spur inter-tribal “mass reprisals” as the conflict enters its third year, United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon said.

“The country is an extraordinary mosaic of tribes, ethnicities, languages and religions,” Ban said today at a UN conference in Vienna. “I am extremely concerned about the risk of sectarian violence and mass reprisals as the situation continues to worsen.”

The Syrian conflict has drawn UN comparisons to genocides in Bosnia and Rwanda. Syrian rebels have been trying to oust President Bashar al-Assad from power since March 2011. The conflict has killed about 70,000 people, according to UN estimates.

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