USA requests United Nations vote on Syria chemical inquiry
USA requests United Nations vote on Syria chemical inquiry
Russia vetoes US-drafted Security Council resolution
16 April, 2018, 07:15
Russian Federation and the United States have tangled at the United Nations over the use of chemical weapons in Syria as Washington and its allies considered whether to strike at President Bashar al-Assad's forces over a suspected poison gas attack.
"The United States is determined to see the monster who dropped chemical weapons on the Syrian people held to account", she said, repeatedly calling Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad a "monster".
The UN Security Council has failed to adopt Russia's draft resolution condemning the recent joint airstrikes by the US, Britain and France on Syria, which came following an alleged chemical weapons attack on the Syrian town of Douma.
There was such a body, called the Joint Investigative Mechanism, or JIM, that reported last fall that Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad's forces were responsible for a sarin gas attack in April 2017 that killed approximately 100 civilians and led to USA airstrikes on a Syrian military base.
This is now the 12th occasion that Russian Federation has vetoed action on Syria at the Security Council, which it has the right to do as one of the council's five permanent members.
Twelve of the 15 members of the UN Security Council voted in favour of the United States text, while Russian Federation and Bolivia voted against it, reports Xinhua.
The United States, in turn, brought to UN Security Council vote the draft resolution to establish a new mechanism of investigation of chemical attacks in Syria.
The vote reflected the deep divisions in the U.N.'s most powerful body, which has been paralyzed in dealing with the seven-year Syrian conflict and chemical weapons use in the country.
It was not immediately clear whether the announcement by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons would delay or prevent a US strike in Syria.
Russian Federation vetoed a Western-backed resolution in November that would have extended the mandate of the joint UN-Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons body that had blamed the Syrian government and the Islamic State extremist group for using chemical weapons. And Ambassador Haley denies the Trump administration is acting impulsively.
"Syria is keen on cooperating with the OPCW to uncover the truth behind the allegations that some Western sides have been advertising to justify their aggressive intentions", Syria's state news agency SANA said. "The use of chemical weapons can not become the status quo", he said.
A resolution needs at least 9 "yes" votes to be approved.
In the Security Council meeting, Syria's envoy to the UN Bashar Jaafari condemned the strikes on Syria as a "flagrant violation of the UN Charter" and described the USA and its allies as "liars and hypocrites" who are "supporting terrorists in Syria".
"I have been closely following the reports of air strikes in Syria conducted by the United States, France and the United Kingdom". He added in a statement, "We warned that such actions will not be left without consequences". May "on the need to take action and deter the further use of chemical weapons".
Haley spoke in vivid detail about the attack, but said she wouldn't bother to hold up photos of the children murdered on Saturday, as she has before, because, "What would be the point?"
"By its actions, the United States is increasingly aggravating the humanitarian catastrophe in Syria, bringing sufferings to civilians and actually conniving at terrorists who have been tormenting the Syrian people for seven years and provoking a new wave of refugees from that country and the region as a whole", it said.
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The government, however, said evacuations from Douma were ongoing and no Syrian government forces had entered the town. There is no evidence for now that the Syrian government has used chemical weapons, Azimov said.
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