Arab and Western countries have condemned the chemical attack that was carried out by the Assad regime on the town of Douma in eastern Ghouta claiming the lives of around 100 civilians, with calls for the launch of military strikes against the Assad regime’s military positions.
Saudi Arabia has expressed deep concern and condemned the chemical attack on Douma, according to an official source at the Kingdom’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The source stressed the need to “stop these tragedies and to pursue a peaceful solution based on the principles of the Geneva Declaration and UN Security Council resolutions.” It pointed out “the importance of the international community’s responsibilities toward civilians in Syria.”
French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said reports of the chemical attack were extremely worrying and called for the United Nations Security Council to meet quickly to examine the situation.
Le Drian said France strongly condemned attacks and bombings by the Assad regime forces in the last 24 hours in Douma, adding they were a “gross violation of international humanitarian law.” He stressed that the use of chemical weapons is a war crime.”
Referring to President Emmanuel Macron’s warning that France could strike unilaterally if there was a deadly chemical attack, Le Drian said that Paris would assume all its responsibilities in the fight against the proliferation of chemical weapons.
At the end of a Mass in St. Peter’s Square on Sunday, Pope Francis said that “there is no such thing as a good war and a bad war. Nothing, but nothing, can justify the use of such instruments of extermination on defenseless people and populations.”
Pope Francis urged that “military and political leaders choose another path, that of negotiations, which is the only one that can bring about peace and not death and destruction.”
The General Secretariat of the Council of Senior Muslim Scholars strongly condemned the Saturday horrible chemical attack. In a statement issued on Sunday, the Secretariat said that this crime requires a firm response from the international community which has a responsibility to deter such crimes; put an end to the humanitarian tragedy in Syria; and hold the perpetrators accountable.
The Assad regime and its allies have unleashed a brutal bombing campaign on eastern Ghouta since February, resulting in the largest mass forced displacement of the local population operation since 2011. Activists said that the use of chemical weapons against civilians in Douma is aimed at forcing the people to surrender after they resisted attempts to force them out of their homes.
The Coalition has repeatedly warned of war crimes and genocide against residents of eastern Ghouta should the international community continues with its failure to protect civilians and take bold measures to enforce international resolutions. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department + Agencies)