Secretary-General of the Syrian Opposition Coalition (SOC), Haytham Rahmeh, emphasized the imperative for the international community to take decisive action in holding the Assad regime accountable for its use of chemical weapons against Syrian civilians over the past years, as well as its commission of war crimes and crimes against humanity. Rahmeh made these remarks on the occasion of the International Day to Commemorate All Victims of Chemical Warfare, observed on November 30th.
Rahmeh stated, “Impartial international investigations and those conducted by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons have irrefutably established the Assad regime’s responsibility for using chemical weapons against civilians, repeatedly, despite the regime’s commitment to the Chemical Weapons Convention in 2013.” The Syrian Network for Human Rights has documented a minimum of 184 chemical weapons attacks by the Assad regime post the Convention’s ratification.
Expressing concern over international inaction, Rahmeh noted that this lack of response facilitated the regime’s continued perpetration of crimes and massacres, exacerbating the ongoing humanitarian tragedies faced by the Syrian people.
Rahmeh underscored the importance of removing obstacles hindering the activation of the International Criminal Court and ending the paralysis within the UN Security Council by preventing the states that are party to a conflict from voting on resolutions.
Calling on democratic nations for support, Rahmeh urged the reinforcement of mechanisms and procedures to deter the criminal regime. He advocated filing lawsuits against the regime in international courts and holding it accountable for violating the Chemical Weapons Convention, committing war crimes, and perpetrating crimes against humanity.
Additionally, Rahmeh called upon the international community to adhere to its legal and moral responsibilities, urging the implementation of Security Council resolutions related to Syria, particularly UN Resolution 2118 (2013). He highlighted Article 21, emphasizing the imposition of measures in accordance with Chapter Seven of the United Nations Charter in the event of unauthorized chemical weapons transfer or their use post-resolution issuance.
(Source: SOC’s Media Department)