Red Cross: Syrian crisis amounts to a civil war
(CNN) -- The 16-month Syrian crisis has essentially become a civil war, a Red Cross spokesman said Monday, meaning international humanitarian law would now apply "wherever hostilities take place."
The International Committee of the Red Cross officially describes the situation as a "non-international armed conflict" and does not use the term "civil war."
But spokesman Alexis Heeb said the group's legal term "appears in the Geneva Convention to describe a civil war."
"What is new is the fact that in April ... we referred to three specific locations" of internal conflict, Heeb said. Now the ICRC says the internal strife has spread.
"Rather than to limit the non-international armed conflict, we say that IHL (international humanitarian law) applies wherever hostilities take place," Heeb said.
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