United Nations security council rejects Russian resolution condemning Syrian strikes

United Nations security council rejects Russian resolution condemning Syrian strikes

United Nations security council rejects Russian resolution condemning Syrian strikes

During the Security Council meeting, US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley expressed Washington's preparedness to launch more military strikes on Syria if Washington learns that the Syrian government carries out a chemical weapons attack.

The United States and other Western powers consider taking military action over Saturday's attack.

Russian Federation on Tuesday vetoed a US-drafted Security Council resolution on an investigation mechanism for chemical weapons use in Syria.

MICHELE KELEMEN, BYLINE: In another diplomatic showdown in the U.N. Security Council, Russia's ambassador, Vasily Nebenzya, called an emergency meeting that seemed aimed at one thing - to head off USA military strikes, which he says would violate the U.N. charter and put Russian troops in harm's way.

Russian officials and President Trump have US have exchanged heated rhetoric since Trump began talk of a USA response to the alleged chemical attack throughout the past week.

Trump and other Western leaders have vowed a quick and forceful response to Saturday's alleged gas attack, which rescue workers say killed more than 40 people.

Doctors and witnesses have said victims showed symptoms of poisoning, possibly by a nerve agent, and reported the smell of chlorine gas.

Twelve council members voted in favour of the US-drafted resolution, while Bolivia joined Russian Federation in voting no and China abstained. A resolution needs nine votes in favour and no vetoes by Russia, China, France, Britain or the United States to pass.

"A large body of information indicates that the Syrian regime used chemical weapons in Douma on April 7th", Haley said.

The Federal Aviation Administration has prohibited US airlines or foreign airlines flying with a USA certificate from flying over Syria since at least 2014 because of anti-aircraft weapons controlled by non-state actors, threats made by extremist groups and ongoing military fighting.

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Moscow and Washington halted attempts by each other in the UN Security Council to set up global investigations into chemical weapons attacks in Syria, which is in the throes of a seven-year-old civil war.

While Haley focused on themes of Russian obstructionism and American resolve to strike as needed, the British and French ambassadors emphasized an interest in pursuing talks to ease tensions.

"The pictures of dead children were not fake news", she said.

But UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said the use of chemical weapons is "abhorrent and requires a thorough investigation", according to his chief spokesman, Stephane Dujarric, at a briefing Monday before the emergency meeting.

It's also not an entirely new resolution, but one the USA has been trying to get passed for months now - updated with the news of this latest reported attack and modified with some of Russia's previous demands as a sign that the U.S.is willing to negotiate on this, the diplomat added.

Before the vote, Russian ambassador to the United Nations Vassily Nebenzia accused the U.S. of pushing for a vote as a pretext for possible use of force against Syria.

The one-page draft resolution, read by Russia's Permanent Envoy at the UN Vasily Nevenzya, condemned the military action against Syria and called on the three Western countries to "halt the aggression against the Syrian Arab Republic immediately and without any delay" and refrain from further use-of-force actions in violation of the UN Charter.

"The perpetrators are named before any investigation, and apparently they are to be punished", Nebenzia said.

"We are confident that we have crippled Syria's chemical weapons program". He claimed that "Russian military experts did not find any trace of" chemical weapons at the site, which is now under the control of the Syrian regime.

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