Japan-drafted resolution on chemical attacks in Syria vetoed
Russia has cast a second veto in the United Nations Security Council to block a resolution that sought the renewal of an international inquiry into chemical weapons attacks in Syria.
The Japan-drafted resolution, which would have extended the so-called Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM) for 30 days to allow time for talks on a wider compromise, was rejected by Russia using its veto power on Friday after 12 members of the world body voted in favor of the joint inquiry, while China abstained and Bolivia voted no.
The mandate for the joint inquiry by the UN and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), which was unanimously formed by the 15-member of the UNSC in 2015, ended on Friday.
On April 4, dozens of people were killed in a chemical attack in the Syrian town of Khan Shaykhun in the northwestern province of Idlib. The US and its allies were quick to accuse Syrian government forces of carrying out the attack.
This is while the Syrian government handed over its entire chemical stockpile under a deal negotiated by Russia and the US back in 2013. The OPCW oversaw the operation.
The incident, which was yet to be investigated thoroughly and properly, prompted Washington to hit a Syrian air base with 59 cruise missiles a few days later, inflicting heavy damage to the Syrian air force, which is combating the foreign-backed militancy in the Arab country.