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International Partnership Targets Those Responsible for Chemical Attacks in Syria

International Partnership Targets Those Responsible for Chemical Attacks in Syria

Wednesday, 24 January, 2018 - 06:45
A Syrian boy holds an oxygen mask over the face of a baby at a makeshift hospital following a reported gas attack on the rebel-held besieged town of Douma in Eastern Ghouta on January 22, 2018. Hasan Mohamed / AFP

Paris witnessed on Tuesday the launch of a conference on International Partnership against Impunity for the Use of Chemical Weapons.

Russia was not invited to the meeting for being considered as guilty of foiling international efforts in the chemical Syrian file.

Although the conference, initiated by France and the US, was not only specified to tackle the use of chemicals in Syria, the situation in the war-torn country was the core issue of discussions.

Paris also issued a list including the names of 25 individuals, entities from Lebanon, France and China that have been sanctioned by the participating countries, in particular the United States, the European Union and France, for their role in the development of chemical programs.

Meanwhile, US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said her country will continue to pursue accountability for chemical weapons attacks, including through the Security Council, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, the Commission of Inquiry on Syria and other bodies.

Echoing Haley’s statements, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said at the meeting of 29 countries trying to identify and punish those who use chemical weapons, “You will face a day of reckoning for your crimes against humanity, and your victims will see justice done.”

Tillerson added that the world should be “patient” regarding the departure of Bashar Assad.

At the battlefield, the Kurdish autonomous administration called on civilians Tuesday to take up arms to defend the Afrin enclave against the ongoing Turkish attack.

"We announce a general mobilization and we invite our people to defend Afrin," it said in a statement.

Turkish troops and allied Syrian forces attacked Afrin on Saturday to push back Kurdish YPG fighters, which Ankara accuses of threatening its security.

The Kurdish mobilization is confronted by regime forces checkpoints preventing fighters from crossing into areas where clashes are taking place.

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