UN Security council fails to adopt Russian resolution on Syria

Nellie Chapman
April 16, 2018

The United States, France and the United Kingdom today carried out a series of missile attacks against three targets associated with the production and storage of chemical weapons in Syria.

Syria's Foreign Ministry condemned the airstrikes as a "flagrant violation of the global law".

"The escalation of the situation around Syria has a devastating impact on the whole system of worldwide relations", he added.

Syrian air defense units downed 71 out of 103 missiles launched by the United States and its allies, it said.

On Thursday, Donald Trump consulted his top national security advisers on a U.S. response but the White House spokeswoman, Sarah Sanders, said on Thursday "no final decision has been taken".

Haley continued to say that the alleged use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government, which is led by Bashar al-Assad, constitutes "one of the most blatant and grotesque violations of global law in the world today".

Western allies, including the United States, the UK, and France, are thought to be preparing for strikes, but Russian Federation, a Syrian ally, has strongly opposed such action. A resolution needs nine votes in favour and no vetoes by Russia, China, France, Britain or the United States to pass. But the next morning, Trump tweeted that he "never said when an attack on Syria would take place".

"We put facts contrary to your myths, " he said.

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Inspectors from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) are expected to arrive in Syria over the weekend to investigate the reported attack, following an invitation from Damascus.

Russian Federation yesterday called for an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council as Moscow said it would consider supplying S-300 missile systems to Syria following US-led strikes.

Russian defence ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said the military had "proof that testifies to the direct participation of Britain in the organising of this provocation in Eastern Ghouta". The government, however, said evacuations from Douma were ongoing and no Syrian government forces had entered the town.

"Once again, we demand an immediate stop to aggression and refrain from the illegal use of force in the future, " he said.

Merkel said all available evidence pointed to the Assad regime being responsible for the Douma attack and criticized Russian Federation for blocking an independent investigation through the UN Security Council.

Nikki Haley, the US ambassador to the United Nations, on Friday accused Russian Federation of lies and covering up for Assad, which she said had used chemical weapons at least 50 times in the past seven years of warfare.

Australia's defense minister issued a statement in support of the strikes, calling them "a calibrated, proportionate and targeted response". "The attack is the blatant violation of worldwide laws, as well as ignoring the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Syria", Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi said according to Iranian state media.

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