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Brazil opposes military intervention in Syria without UN backing

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opposes military intervention in Syria without the full backing of the United Nations, Brazilian Foreign Minister Luiz Alberto Figueiredo said Wednesday.

"The Brazilian government's position is and has always been not to consider armed intervention if it is not done under the support of a resolution from the United Nations Security Council," Figueiredo said at his first press conference as foreign minister.

"Otherwise, we will always consider it a violation of international and of the UN Charter," added Figueiredo, who previously served as his country's ambassador to the UN.

"Force should be used only in self-defense, as stipulated in the United Nations Charter, or under special authorization from a UN Security Council resolution," he said.

On the alleged use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government against civilians, Figueiredo stressed that the incident was still under investigation.

"There is strong evidence of the use of chemical weapons, which is intolerable, unacceptable, but let us wait for the results of the UN investigations. There is an impartial group verifying the facts," he said.

Syrian opposition rebels claimed that chemical weapons were used last week in an attack on the outskirts of the Syrian capital of Damascus, killing some 1,300 people including children.

The five permanent members of the UN Security Council-the United States, China, Britain, France and Russia-met Wednesday to discuss a Britain-proposed resolution on Syria, which calls for a military response to the use of chemical weapons.

About 100,000 people have been killed, and about 7 million are in need of humanitarian aid since the start of civil conflicts in March 2011, according to the UN.

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