French President Emmanuel Macron and his US counterpart Donald Trump vowed there would be “no impunity” in the event of further chemical weapons use in Syria in a telephone call Friday.
Macron “stressed there will be a firm response in the case of proven use of chemical weapons leading to the death of civilians, in close coordination with our American allies,” a statement from the French presidency said. “France and the United States will not tolerate impunity.”
On Sunday, one day following the adoption of UN Security Council resolution calling for a 30-day ceasefire, a child was killed and 18 others were injured in a chlorine gas attack by the Assad regime on the town of Shifouniya in eastern Ghouta. Aerial bombardment also killed head of the local council in Shifouniya on Sunday.
Britain would consider joining US military strikes against the Assad regime if there is evidence chemical weapons are being used against civilians, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said on Tuesday.
Johnson said he hoped Britain and other Western nations would not stand by in the event of a chemical attack, voicing support for limited strikes if there is “incontrovertible evidence” of the Assad regime’s involvement.
“If we know that it has happened, and we can demonstrate it, and if there is a proposal for action where the UK could be useful then I think we should seriously consider it,” Johnson told BBC radio.
The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) on February 25, 2018 reportedly launched an investigation into recent attacks in the besieged eastern Ghouta to determine whether any banned munitions were used.
There have been recent reports of continued cooperation in the manufacture of chemical weapons between the Assad regime and North Korea. The Syrian Coalition expressed deep concern about these reports. Head of the Coalition’s Foreign Affairs Department Abdel-Ahad Steifo stressed that these reports are a cause of concern to the Syrian people only as it poses a threat to the international community as a whole.
The Coalition has repeatedly called for the referral of the situation in Syria to the International Criminal Court and for holding Bashar al-Assad accountable for the war crimes he is committing in Syria, including the use of chemical weapons against civilians killing thousands of children. (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)