Syrian opposition urges international action on chemical weapons


Syria’s opposition on Friday urged the UN Security Council to take immediate action after the United States said for the first time the regime probably used chemical weapons.

The call came as British Prime Minister David Cameron said that growing evidence of the use of chemical weapons by President Bashar al-Assad was “extremely serious” and called for increased foreign pressure on the Syrian regime.

“It is time for the UN Security Council to act” on Syria, an official from the main opposition National Coalition said on condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to speak to the media.

The UN Security Council has been stalled over Syria for more than two years, with members Russia and China backing Assad and vetoing several draft resolutions that would have imposed sanctions on the regime.

“This is a massive issue, and the Security Council’s paralysis over Syria is no excuse,” the Coalition official said.

“The UN needs to immediately investigate the use of chemical weapons in Syria. Should it find the regime used such weapons, it must act immediately, at least by imposing a no-fly zone,” he added.

“If the Security Council cannot break its paralysis, proof of the use of chemical weapons by the regime would open the way for others, such as NATO, to act.”

The National Coalition has accused the regime of using chemical weapons in the northern province of Aleppo, in Homs in the center of Syria and in rebel-held areas near Damascus.



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