Thursday, 05 April 2018 14:36

On the First Anniversary of the Khan Sheikhoun Chemical Weapons Massacre

Press release
Syrian Coalition
Media Department
April 5, 2018

A year has passed since the Assad regime committed the horrible crime of using chemical weapons against civilians in the town of Khan Sheikhoun in southern rural Idlib.

The Syrian Coalition renews calls for the activation of Article 21 of UN Security Council resolution 2118 which threatened to impose measures under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter in the event of non-compliance with the resolution, including the unauthorized transfer or any use of chemical weapons by anyone in Syria.

The Assad regime blatantly violated UN resolution 2118 when it bombed the town of Khan Sheikhoun with the sarin nerve agent on April 4, 2017. The attack claimed the lives of 91 civilians, including 32 children. The Assad regime has not yet been faced with any consequences or accountability for the crime.

According to a report the Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) issued on Wednesday, the Assad regime has carried out as many as 214 chemical weapons attacks since the start of the revolution, including more than 10 attacks that took place after the Khan Sheikhoun massacre.

The Coalition holds the international community responsible for the continued impunity for these crimes as it allows Russia to continue to disable the UN Security Council. The repeated issuance of statements of condemnation and threats of punishment have proved futile. It is imperative, therefore, to stand up to Russia's support for these atrocious crimes. The international community has an obligation to take serious action and exert real pressure to hold criminals accountable and put an end to these crimes as well as the mass forced displacement of civilians.

Indeed, allowing the criminals who planned and carried out these massacres to escape punishment for these crimes and for the mass forced displacement of Syrians will remain an absolute disgrace to the international community. Impunity for these crimes risks opening the door for a world in which war crimes and genocide are committed with prohibited weapons without the perpetrators fearing the consequences of their actions.

May our wounded recover, our detainees be free, and our fallen herpes rest in peace.
Long live Syria and the Syrian people, free and with honor.
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