A general view shows a damaged classroom at a school after it was hit in an air strike in the village of Hass, in the south of Syria's rebel-held Idlib province on October 26, 2016. / AFP / Omar haj kadour
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The top U.N. human rights official called Tuesday for tens of thousands of detainees to be released from Syria's prisons and for torturers to be brought to court as part of a lasting peace.A scathing report by a U.N. investigative commission also found that the Syrian air force deliberately bombed water sources in December, a war crime that cut off water for 5.5 million people in and around the capital Damascus, and a school complex in the country's northern countryside in October, killing 21 children.The Syrian government delegation did not attend but has denied allegations of systematic torture.The U.N. Syria commission's report also concluded that government forces deliberately targeted the capital's water supply infrastructure last December, threatening water supplies to 5.5 million people. It said the attack was unjustified, and constituted a war crime. The commission said there were no reports of people suffering water contamination on or before Dec. 23, when the Syrian air force hit Ain Fijeh spring with at least two air strikes.
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