U. N. security council adopts measure to identify chlorine bomb users in Syria

Resumen:

El consejo de seguridad de las naciones unidas, emitió un comunicado en el cual expresaba que mandaría a un panel de expertos a Siria, con el objetivo de investigar los ataques con armas químicas que se han producido en el conflicto de dicho país en los últimos años, las cuales fueron prohibidas en un acuerdo en el 2014 entre Estados Unidos, Rusia y Siria, pero que a pesar de esto han seguido siendo usadas en la guerra, como armas químicas a base de cloro.

The United Nations Security Council took a major step on Friday in holding chemical weapons users in the Syria war accountable, adopting a resolution to create an investigating panel to identify them.

The resolution, drafted by the United States after an unusual collaboration with Russia on the text, was passed unanimously by the 15-member Council.

It represents the most significant action by the Council on the chemical weapons issue in Syria since President Bashar al-Assad’s government first pledged nearly two years ago, under American and Russian pressure, to purge its stockpile of the munitions and join the treaty that bans them.

Despite that pledge, and the verified destruction of all 1,300 tons of the Syrian government’s declared chemical arsenal under international supervision, the number of bomb attacks suspected of involving chlorine has been growing in the war, now in its fifth year.

While chlorine, a common chemical, is not among the banned substances that Syria was required to purge, its use as a weapon is still prohibited under the treaty and considered a war crime.

Until now, no measure undertaken by the Security Council had provided a means to attribute responsibility for chemical weapons attacks.

The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, the group based in The Hague that polices the treaty, said early this year that it was confident that deadly chlorine-filled bombs had been used in the Syrian conflict. While it was not authorized to ascribe blame, the group’s reporting quoted witnesses as saying the weapons were dropped by helicopters, which only the Syrian government possesses.

The United States has repeatedly accused Mr. Assad’s forces of responsibility for these attacks, while Russia, an ally of the Syrian government, has been far more skeptical. Mr. Assad has denied any responsibility.

The resolution, which the Americans have been working on for months, represents a rare instance of cooperation by the United States and Russia. They have differed bitterly over the causes of the Syrian conflict and how to end it, but they share an opposition to the use of chemical weapons.

The scheduling of the vote followed an announcement by Secretary of State John Kerry on Thursday that he and Sergey V. Lavrov, the Russian foreign minister, had agreed on the resolution text, a signal that the Russians would not block it.

The resolution asks Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, in coordination with the director general at the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, for recommendations within 20 days on establishing a “joint investigative mechanism.”

This investigative panel of experts would be authorized by the Council to “identify to the greatest extent feasible individuals, entities, groups or governments who were perpetrators, organizers, sponsors or otherwise involved in the use of chemicals as weapons.”

The panel would be authorized to conduct its work for at least one year.

The resolution also requires the Syrian government and all other parties in Syria to cooperate with this panel, and it calls on other states to provide any information they may have on those responsible or involved in the “use of chemicals as weapons, including chlorine or any other toxic chemical, in the Syrian Arab Republic.”

Extraído de: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/08/world/middleeast/un-security-council-measure-aims-to-identify-users-of-chlorine-bombs-in-syria.html?_r=0

Fotografía extraída de: http://internacional.elpais.com/internacional/2015/08/07/actualidad/1438962154_149295.html

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