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"The Cold War is back" : UN's Secretary General, Antonio Guterres

14 April 2018

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres voiced "regret" Wednesday that the Security Council had failed to agree on the proper recourse to a suspected chemical attack in Syria that killed dozens of people. Unlike the USA measure, the Russian text would not have sought to assign blame for the attack but would have rather simply sought to determine if a chemical attack took place.

Guterres said "the Cold War is back - with a vengeance but with a difference", because safeguards that managed the risk of escalation in the past "no longer seem to be present".

We, the undersigned organizations, urge UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres to step up in defense of civilians everywhere by activating an independent UN mechanism to attribute responsibility for chemical attacks in Syria.

Guterres told the Security Council that "the norms against chemical weapons must be held".

"I've been reiterating my deep concerns about the risks of the current impasse and stressed the need to avoid the situation spiraling out of control".

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Guterres cited the Palestinian-Israeli divide, the Sunni-Shiite divide "evident from the Gulf to the Mediterranean", opposing attitudes on the Muslim Brotherhood and the status of the Kurds, threats to communities that have lived in the region for millennia, and other factors.

Russian Federation has accused the United Kingdom of faking an attack, an allegation Britain dismissed as a "grotesque, blatant lie".

He referred to Washington's latest statements on Syria as well as to United States interventions in recent years in both Iraq and Libya.

We will remind, the state Department said that the era of soft policy towards Russian Federation was held.

"Our president has not yet made a decision about possible action in Syria".

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He "regretted" the Russian veto at the U.N. Security Council which prevented a "united and firm response" after a suspected gas attack last week in Douma, Syria.

Echoing the U.S. stance, France's Ambassador Francois Delattre said Assad's government had reached a "point of no return" with repeated use of chemical weapons.

During the meeting, Britain's permanent representative to the United Nations Karen Pierce said that Russian actions regarding Syria are "the latest in a pernicious chronology of disregard for global law" by Moscow.

Russian Federation and the United States tangled on Tuesday (10 April) at the UN Security Council over Syria as they blocked attempts by each other to set up worldwide investigations into chemical weapons attacks in the war-ravaged country, write Michelle Nichols and Ellen Francis.

The Portuguese diplomat reported that a mission of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has already arrived in Syria to clarify the facts of the alleged use of chemical weapons and soon, a second team must be added.

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