Researchers risking death to document Syria's crisis

A man walks past damage after what activists said was an air strike by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad in the Al-Maysar neighbourhood of Aleppo on February 23, 2014. (Hosam Katan/Reuters)

A man walks past damage after what activists said was an air strike by forces loyal to Syria's President Bashar al-Assad in the Al-Maysar neighbourhood of Aleppo on February 23, 2014. (Hosam Katan/Reuters)

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The conflict in Syria is now entering its third year, still with no end in sight. For most Syrians any semblance of their former lives has vanished: entire neighbourhoods are being shelled and razed to the ground, cities are emptying out as residents flee, and the death toll continues its steady rise. The latest estimates put the number of dead at over 100,000.

But it's not just the people of Syria who are in jeopardy, the evidence of countless human rights violations is also at risk. Enter the Syrian Commission for Justice and Accountability.

Journalist and attorney Jordan Fletcher, a fellow at the University of Toronto's Munk Centre for Global Affairs, recently co-authored a piece about the investigators out risking their lives to get incriminating documents out of Syria.

He speaks to Jian about the individual risks of truth-seeking in Syria, as well as the historic dangers of allowing the proof to disappear.


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