Syria: The international community must reclaim a world order that respects international law

Damning footage of the regime’s deadly chemical attack in Idlib that killed at least 86 civilians and left more than 200 injured earlier this week, is yet another confirmation of the failure of the international community. The complete impunity which the regime’s criminal military apparatus and supporters (including Russia) shamefully continue to enjoy has fuelled an escalation in the atrocity of crimes being committed, and must be ended.

Since the Syrian conflict broke out in 2011, the Security Council has proved incapable of responding to the critical need for action as a result of vetoes exercised by Russia and China, which have blocked several initiatives at the international level to resolve the conflict.The subsequent failure of the international community to respond has brought individual states to engage in warfare action outside of the international legal framework.

“Today more than ever, the abuse of the veto power has to be addressed. Our organisations again urge the General Assembly to reform the Security Council to prevent the use of the veto when faced with situations involving the commission of war crimes and crimes against humanity.”

Dimitris Christopoulos, FIDH President

“It is a call for legality: all violations of international law effectively sap the international community’s ability to work towards a peaceful political solution and to shape Syria’s future.”

Mazen Darwish, FIDH Representative on Syria, and President of the Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression (SCM)

A draft Security Council resolution condemning the use of chemical weapons, calling for justice and accountability and requiring the Syrian government to supply its flight logs to international investigators has been introduced this week. This resolution must be adopted. The General Assembly must consolidate the principles which lead to the establishment of a world order that respects international law.

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