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Syria claims the U.S. must be held accountable for its crimes and retreat from the country, after a recent Pentagon probe cleared its troops of a 2019 deadly attack on Syrian civilians.
The U.S. Department of Defense (Pentagon) decided not to hold anyone accountable for the 2019 airstrike in Baghuz, in Syria's eastern province of Deir Ezzor, which killed multiple civilians, including women and children.
The decision was revealed in a recent release of the results of its investigation on Tuesday. The reason claimed was that U.S. troops did not violate the laws of war, nor did they act negligently.
In reaction to the indicated report, Syria's permanent mission to the United Nations addressed the U.S. magazine Newsweek, asserting that "these biased investigations cannot deny the fact that a crime against humanity took place in Baghuz."
According to an official #Pentagon inquiry, a 2019 attack in #Syria that killed up to 64 civilians "did not breach #US rules of engagement or the law of war," and was not carried out with "wanton disregard." pic.twitter.com/VctxcAlTa0
"Any justification provided by the U.S. Administration concerning not violating the law of war or the rules of engagement is dismissing the fact that U.S. forces deployed in Syria are illegal and launch military strikes, under the pretext of combating terrorism, without the approval or coordination of the Government of the Syrian Arab Republic," the mission's response said.
The mission called the U.S. report a "clear attempt to absolve the U.S. occupation forces in Syria of their direct responsibility for civilian casualties." It further considered the Pentagon's recommendations for clearer guidelines to prevent further civilian casualties as "an admission of negligence that demands accountability."
"It is time for the U.S. forces to immediately withdraw from the territory of the Syrian Arab Republic, to hold them accountable for their crimes and to force them to compensate the victims," the response stressed.