Footage of Syrian gas attack deaths brings UN Security council to tears

The Syrian government has repeatedly denied using chemical weapons.

By REUTERS
April 17, 2015 02:04
2 minute read.
Syrian man in Aleppo

A Syrian man reacts after oppositionists say pro-Assad forces dropped a bomb on a neighborhood in Aleppo. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

UNITED NATIONS - Members of the United Nations Security Council teared up on Thursday when Syrian doctors showed a video of failed attempts to resuscitate three children after a chlorine gas attack in March, prompting renewed calls for accountability.

The children, aged 1, 2 and 3, their parents and grandmother were killed in the March 16 attack on Sarmin village in northwest Idlib province, said Dr. Mohamed Tennari, director of the field hospital where the family was taken.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


Government and opposition forces in Syria have denied using chlorine 'barrel bombs,' which the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) says are dropped from helicopters. The Syrian air force is the only party in the conflict known to have helicopters.

Tennari, Dr. Zaher Sahloul, President of the Syrian American Medical Society, and Qusai Zakarya, a survivor of a sarin gas attack in Ghouta near Damascus in August 2013, briefed the informal closed meeting organized by the United States.

US Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power said it was an "extremely unusual and very emotional meeting." She added: "If there was a dry eye in the room I didn't see it." Several others attending said many people cried.

"Those people responsible for these attacks have to be held accountable," Power told reporters later.

"If we don't act on this then others will believe that they can do this sort of thing with impunity and that would be a deplorable outcome," New Zealand's UN Ambassador Jim McLay told reporters.



The Security Council failed last year to refer the civil war in Syria, now in its fifth year, to the International Criminal Court for possible prosecution of war crimes and crimes against humanity. Syrian ally Russia, backed by China, vetoed the move.

The attack on Sarmin came 10 days after the 15-member council condemned the use of chlorine as a weapon in Syria and threatened to take action if it was used again.

Chlorine is not a prohibited substance, but its use as a weapon is banned under the 1997 Chemical Weapons Convention, which Syria joined in 2013. A fact-finding mission of the OPCW is examining the Sarmin attack but it is not mandated to ascribe blame.

Russia has said there would need to be strong proof of who is to blame for any chemical attacks before the council could take action.

Related Content

August 17, 2018
German Jewish council urges end of Iran-Germany trade

By BENJAMIN WEINTHAL