President of the Syrian Opposition Coalition (SOC), Salem al-Meslet, stressed that the chemical attack that the Assad regime carried out in eastern on August 21, 2013 was not met with an appropriate response form the international community. He said that “the UN Security Council waited 26 days to condemn the massacre, then forced the Assad regime to surrender its chemical weapons cache through UN Resolution 2118 while failing to take any deterrent, punitive action for that atrocious crime.”
In an op-ed article published on the Syria TV website, Al-Meslet said that “following the massacre, the Syrian people counted on the promises of the then US President Barack Obama, who simply concluded an agreement with Russia to force the Assad regime to hand over its chemical weapons.”
The regime found in this agreement a license to kill more Syrians with all other types of weapons, especially barrel bombs and missiles, except chemical weapons. What is worse is that the Assad regime did not honor the agreement as it carried out more chemical attacks.”
Al-Meslet pointed out that the absence of a strong deterrent and the fragile handling of an exceptionally serious issue such as chemical weapons encouraged the Assad regime to commit more crimes with impunity. “The regime has so far used chemical weapons in 184 occasions since then despite its ratification at the time of the Chemical Weapons Convention. The attack claimed the lives of more innocent victims in different regions in Syria, according to human rights groups.”
Al-Meslet stressed that the international community must give up its deadly procrastination which is deepening the Syrian tragedy, and assume its responsibilities with regard to holding the Assad regime accountable for its countless crimes against the Syrian people who are suffering an unprecedented human tragedy because of the regime. He also called for taking effective action within a clear timetable to ensure the implementation of UN Security Council resolution 2254 and achieving a political transition in Syria.
Al-Meslet concluded his remarks by lamenting that despite the ongoing massacres against the Syrian people, the perpetrators, namely Bashar al-Assad and his backers, are still ruling Syria, presiding over the skulls of the Syrian people whose only sin was demanding freedom, dignity and taking to the streets to chant: “The people want to overthrow the regime.” He stressed that the long years of crime, murder, arrest, torture and displacement did not change the demands of the free Syrians, as they are still chanting “the people want to bring down the regime.”
(Source: SOC’s Media Department)