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UN Chief Warns Further Escalation After US, UK, France Airstrikes on Syria

UN Chief Warns Further Escalation After US, UK, France Airstrikes on Syria

Any use of chemical weapons is abhorrent. Russia, China and Bolivia supported the measure, while four members abstained and eight voted against - including the U.S., Britain and France.

At the meeting, the fifth in a week on chemical weapons in Syria, Russia and its supporters again clashed with the US and its allies over a suspected poison gas attack on April 7 in the Damascus suburb of Douma.

"The United Kingdom, France and the United States acted - not as revenge, not as punishment, not as a symbolic show of force", said U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley.

"When our president draws a red line, our president enforces the red line", Haley stressed. After the United States, Britain and France carried out a wave of strikes against Bashar al-Assad's Syrian regime on April 14, 2018 in response to alleged chemical weapons attacks, French Defence Minister Florence Parly said that France fired cruise missiles from frigates in the Mediterranean and deployed fighter jets from home bases as part of its strikes.

"This is how you want global affairs to be conducted now?" said an irritated Vassily Nebenzia. The draft, which sought to condemn the strikes as a violation of global law and the U.N. Charter, received only three votes in favor from the 15 council members. "If we continue on this path, we will soon reach the diplomacy of the absurd".

"The Security Council has primary responsibility for the maintenance of global peace and security".

Earlier on Friday, the Secretary-General had called on the Security Council to create an independent body to determine who had used chemical weapons in Syria.

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Britain believes "that is wholly within the principles and practices of the United Nations", she said.

"I urge all member states to show restraint in these risky circumstances and to avoid any acts that could escalate the situation and worsen the suffering of the Syrian people", Guterres said in a statement.

Jacinda Ardern says the Government accepts why the U.S., the UK and France sent missiles to Syria over failed United Nations discussions.

"Once again, we demand an immediate stop to aggression and refrain from the illegal use of force in the future", he said.

The three allies have not given up on a political solution to the Syrian conflict.

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has warned against any further escalation after the U.S., U.K., and France jointly launched airstrikes targeting the Assad regime's alleged chemical weapons capabilities in Syria.