Members of the United Nations Security Council teared up on Thursday when Syrian doctors showed a video of failed attempts to resuscitate three children after a chlorine gas attack in March, prompting renewed calls for accountability.
The children, aged 1, 2 and 3, their parents and grandmother were killed in the March 16 attack on Sarmin village in northwest Idlib province, said Dr. Mohamed Tennari, director of the field hospital where the family was taken.
Tennari, Dr. Zaher Sahloul, President of the Syrian American Medical Society, and Qusai Zakarya, a survivor of a sarin gas attack in Ghouta near Damascus in August 2013, briefed the informal closed meeting organized by the United States.
Every country in the 15-member council brought up the need for accountability in the sometimes deadly attacks, except for Russia and allies China and Venezuela, Sahloul said. He said every council member was affected by the video and briefing, and “some of them cried.”
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power said it was an “extremely unusual and very emotional meeting.” She added: “If there was a dry eye in the room I didn’t see it.” Several others attending said many people cried.
“Those people responsible for these attacks have to be held accountable,” Power told reporters later.
Vice president of the Syrian Coalition Hisham Marwa stresses that “the UN Security Council must take all necessary measures that ensures the enforcement of the resolution No. 2209, which rules that chlorine gas is toxic and a chemical weapon, and that using it militarily represents a gross violation of international law and a flagrant violation of Resolution 2118.”
Marwa points out that terms 6th and 7th of the UN Security Council resolution stresses that those individuals responsible for any use of chemicals as weapons, including chlorine or any other toxic chemical, must be held accountable. They also decide in the event of future non-compliance with resolution 2118 to impose measures under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter. (Source: Syrian Coalition + Agencies)