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UN chief warns that Middle East 'chaos' threatens global peace

15 April 2018

Terming any use of chemical weapons as "abhorrent", the United Nations head said: "The suffering it causes is horrendous".

Due largely to divisions among its five permanent members - China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States - the Council could not adopt three draft resolutions that would have responded to a suspected chemical weapons attack in the Syrian town of Douma.

Asked whether Washington has proof Assad launched the attack on Douma, the main city in the former rebel bastion of Eastern Ghouta, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said: "Yes".

As Washington weighs up when, where and if it is to strike in Syria over a suspected deadly chemical attack, fears are mounting that head on confrontation with Russian Federation could be the result.

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The situation is quite clear: as long as the Security Council of the United Nations does not order or authorise the use of force, not any single country, or an alliance of country, has the right to use military force.

Nasharudin said GMMF concurred with the statement made by the UN Secretary-General, H.E. Antonio Guterres who stated that the situation has become a threat to global peace and security, with Syria representing the most serious of threats, and that there is no military solution to the conflict.

France's Macron earlier called for stepped-up talks with Moscow, and spoke to President Vladimir Putin by phone.

French Ambassador Francois Delattre told the Security Council meeting that world powers must respond to the threat of repeated use of toxic gas as a weapon in Syria's war.

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And US ambassador Nikki Haley, while allowing that Washington is still weighing its options and pursuing its own investigation, warned her colleagues, "At one point, you have to do something".

We must ensure accountability in this regard, because there is no accountability emboldened to those who have used these weapons, he stressed. The Syrian government has denied the allegations.

But the Russian ambassador was defiant.

What is less clear is whether sarin, the agent used in a chemical attack that prompted United States missile strikes a year ago, was also used.

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He urged the UN Security Council to agree on establishing an inquiry that would identify the perpetrators of chemical attacks.

UN chief warns that Middle East 'chaos' threatens global peace