Soleimani’s killing violated international law: UN Special Rapporteur

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An independent United Nations expert has determined that the United States drone strike that killed a top Iranian Commander in Iraq in January this year represented a violation of international law.

The United States killed Soleimani, leader of the Revolutionary Guards’ Quds Force, with a drone strike in Iraq on January 3. Washington accused Soleimani of masterminding attacks by Iranian-aligned militias on US forces in the region.

This is according to the Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions Agnes Callamard who will present her findings to the Human Rights Council on Thursday into the killing of Revolutionary Guard Commander Qassem Soleimani.

Callamard’s report finds that the attack of the Quds Force Commander represented a violation of the UN Charter, in which she called for greater accountability for targeted killing by armed drones and for greater regulation of the weapons’ use.

She also found that the US failed to provide sufficient evidence of an ongoing or imminent attack against its interests that could justify the strike on a convoy carrying Soleimani as it left Baghdad airport on January 3.

Special Rapporteurs are appointed by the Geneva-based UN Council but work independently of the organisation.

Member states then determine a course of action based on the report.

The US had accused the Commander of orchestrating attacks against its interests in the region.

Iran has issued an arrest warrant for US President Donald Trump and 35 others over the killing and has asked Interpol to assist, at least according to reports in Iran.

Iran issues arrest warrant for Trump

Last month, Iran issued an arrest warrant for US President Donald Trump and 35 others over the killing of top general Qassem Soleimani and has asked Interpol for help, Tehran prosecutor Ali Alqasimehr.

Alqasimehr said the warrants had been issued on charges of murder and terrorist action. He said Iran had asked Interpol to issue a “red notice” for Trump and the other individuals the Islamic Republic accuses of taking part in the killing of Soleimani.

Alqasimehr said the group included other US military and civilian officials but did not provide further details.

He said Iran would continue to pursue the matter after Trump’s time in office ends.

The killing of Soleimani brought the United States and Iran to the brink of armed conflict after Iran retaliated by firing missiles at American targets in Iraq several days later.– Additional reporting by Reuters

In the file video below, Guterres expresses concern over Soleimani’s killing:

In the video below, Middle-Eastern Affairs Commentator Seyed Hoseini speaks about Soleimani’s killing: