As the Syrian army’s onslaught in eastern Ghouta continues unabated, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley warned that Washington “remains prepared to act if it must,” if the world body’s security Council fails to act on chemical weapon violations in the war-torn-country. “The ceasefire has failed. The situation of the civilians in eastern Ghouta is dire and the United States is acting. We have drafted a new ceasefire resolution that provides no room for evasion. It is simple, straightforward and binding. It will take effect immediately upon adoption by this council. It contains no counter-terrorism loopholes for Assad, Iran and the Russians to hide behind. And it focuses on the area the secretary-general has identified and that the world can see holds the greatest urgency for lives of innocent civilians, Damascus city and eastern Ghouta. If Russia, Iran and Assad cannot agree to stop the bombing in this limited part of Syria for this limited amount of time, they will not agree to anything that’s worthwhile.” / “We also warn any nation that is determined to impose its will through chemical attacks and inhuman suffering, most especially the outlawed Syrian regime, the United States remains prepared to act if we must. It is not the path we prefer but it is a path we have demonstrated we will take. And we are prepared to take it again,” US ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley said.
Haley’s warning came as the United States asked the Security Council to demand an immediate 30-day ceasefire in Damascus and rebel-held eastern Ghouta, where Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces, backed by Russia and Iran, say they are targeting “terrorist groups” which are shelling the capital. Russia’s U.N. envoy Vassily Nebenzia told the Security Council that the Syrian government has “every right to try and remove” elements that threaten the safety of its citizens and described the Damascus suburbs as a “hotbed of terrorism,” while condemning the American warning as a move aimed at preparing the ground for the unilateral use of force against the Syrian government.