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UK FM says Assad will be guilty of war crime if behind suspected gas attack

British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson on Tuesday said Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad would be guilty of a war crime if it were proved his regime was responsible for a suspected chemical weapons attack on the Syrian rebel-held province of Idlib.

“If this were proved to have been committed by the Assad regime then it would be another reason to think they are an absolutely heinous outfit.

“It is a war crime.

“Bombing your own civilians with chemical weapons is unquestionably a war crime and they must be held to account,’’ Johnson told newsmen at a news conference in London.

The suspected Syrian government chemical attack killed no fewer than 58 people, including 11 children, while a Syrian military source denied the army had used any such weapons.

The UN war crimes investigators said on Tuesday they were looking into an alleged chemical weapons attack on a Syrian town in Idlib as well as reports of a subsequent attack on a medical facility where injured people were being treated.

In a statement condemning the attack that killed scores of civilians, the UN Commission of Inquiry on Syria said that the use of chemical weapons as well as any deliberate targeting of medical facilities “would amount to war crimes and serious violations of human rights law”.

“It is imperative for perpetrators of such attacks to be identified and held accountable,” said the independent panel led by Brazilian expert Paulo Pinheiro.

The  France’s foreign minister has called for an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council after a suspected gas attack on dlib province.

Jean-Marc Ayrault said in a statement: “a new and particularly serious chemical attack took place this morning

in Idlib province. The first information suggests a large number of victims, including children.

“I condemn this disgusting act.

“In the face of such serious actions that threaten international security, I ask for everyone not to shirk their responsibilities. With this in mind, I ask for an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council,” he added.

 


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