The State Department is planning to cut all funding to a group devoted to investigating war crimes by Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad. The government will cut all of the $500,000 for Commission for International Justice and Accountability (CIJA) that has been annually allocated to the organization for the past two years. The CIJA has played an important role in tracking Assad’s many illegal activities, including the use of barrel bombs and starving out besieged towns. "We were told that criminal investigations were not a priority for that program in 2015," said CIJA spokesperson Nerma Jelacic. Since March 2011, some 190,000 people have died in the Syrian conflict.