Red Cross Deems Syrian Conflict a Civil War

The Red Cross reports that the conflict's violence has spread across the country.

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Protestors against Syrian violence (AFP/Getty Images)

The Syrian conflict has been upgraded to a full-scale civil war by the International Committee of the Red Cross. The group says, according to USA Today, that the fighting has spread from three key areas and that now international humanitarian law applies, which grants, among other things, "parties to a conflict the right to use appropriate force to achieve their aims."

Previously, the ICRC had restricted its assessment of the scope of the conflict to the hotspots of Idlib, Homs and Hama, but Hassan said the organization had determined the violence has spread beyond those areas. "Hostilities have spread to other areas of the country," Hassan told the Associated Press. "International humanitarian law applies to all areas where hostilities are taking place."

Also on Sunday, Syria denied U.N. claims that government forces used heavy weapons during a military operation that has brought widespread international condemnation against President Bashar Assad's regime.

Read more at USA Today.

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