No: 246, 17 September 2013, Press Release Regarding the Report of the UN Investigation Mission on the Use of Chemical Weapons in Ghouta on the Night of 21 August

The report prepared by the UN Investigation Mission regarding the use of chemical weapons on the night of August 21st in the Ghouta region of Damascus has established that sarin, which is considered a chemical weapon, was widely used in Ghouta through surface-to-surface missiles.

The report does not include a clear statement as to the perpetrators of the chemical attack, given the limited mandate of the UN Investigation Mission. However, the nature of the chemicals and the way in which they were used, as contained in the report, leave no room for doubt that the responsibility of this barbaric act lies with the regime.

By attacking the people with chemical weapons, the regime has committed a serious crime against humanity. Such a crime must not go unpunished; those who committed it must be held accountable. It is the international community’s primary duty and responsibility to ensure this.

The report also clearly demonstrates once again the threat that the regime poses to regional and global peace. The rapid and unconditional implementation of the agreement recently reached in Geneva on the placing of the chemical weapons in the Syrian regime's inventory under international control and destroying them is gaining more importance in terms of the elimination of this threat. In order to prevent the exploitation of this process by the regime, it must be ensured that the UN Security Council adopts a binding decision clearly stating that measures under Chapter 7 of the Charter of the United Nations will be taken against the regime in case of non-compliance with the agreement.