The attack gave an opportunity to U.S. President Donald Trump to blame his predecessor Barack Obama for the chemical onslaught on Syrian population.
By Rakesh Raman
Dozens of people – including children – died Tuesday in one of the deadliest attacks in Syria where banned chemical weapons were used.
Although the forces behind the attack that took place in the form of chemical bombs dropped on civilians from warplanes have not been identified, westerner observers have put the blame on the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
The attack also gave an opportunity to U.S. President Donald Trump to blame his predecessor Barack Obama for the chemical onslaught on Syrian population.
Trump said in a White House statement released Tuesday that these heinous actions by the Bashar al-Assad regime are a consequence of the past administration’s weakness and irresolution.
“President Obama said in 2012 that he would establish a ‘red line’ against the use of chemical weapons and then did nothing. The United States stands with our allies across the globe to condemn this intolerable attack,” Trump said in the statement.
Meanwhile, the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General António Guterres said Tuesday that he is “deeply disturbed” by reports of alleged use of chemical weapons in an airstrike in the Khan Shaykhun area of southern Idlib, Syria.
He noted that the UN Security Council affirmed that the use of chemical weapons “constitutes a serious violation of international law” and runs counter to resolutions passed by the 15-member body.
While the UN has said that it is not in a position to independently verify these reports, the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) is currently in the process of gathering and analysing information to confirm if chemical weapons were used.
The OPCW is the implementing body of the Chemical Weapons Convention, which aims to eliminate an entire category of weapons of mass destruction by prohibiting the development, production, acquisition, stockpiling, retention, transfer or use of chemical weapons by States Parties.
Meanwhile, the Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic has offered its support for OPCW’s fact finding mission. Established by the UN Human Rights Council, the Commission works to investigate if human rights abuses occurred in Syria since March 2011 and who should be held responsible.
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