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Russia fails to win UN backing to condemn military strikes on Syria

AFP  |  United Nations 

today failed to win UN backing for a condemnation of military strikes launched by the United States, Britain and on in retaliation for an alleged attack.

A Russian-drafted resolution won three votes at the Security Council, far below the nine votes required for adoption. Eight countries voted against and four abstained.

The Russian measure would have condemned the "aggression" against and demanded that the three allies refrain from any further strike.

The vote was held after the warned that it was "locked and loaded," ready to launch more military strikes on if Bashar al-Assad's forces carry out a new attack.

Britain argued that the strikes were "both right and legal" to alleviate humanitarian suffering from repeated use of in attacks in Syria's seven-year war.

The United States, Britain and launched air strikes in response to a in the rebel-held town of a week ago that killed at least 40 people.

Russian accused the West of "hooliganism" and demanded that it "immediately end its actions against Syria and refrain from them in the future." "You are not only placing yourselves above international law, but you are trying to re-write international law," Nebenzia said after the vote.

and supported the Russian measure, while the three allies along with Sweden, the Netherlands, Poland, and opposed it. Peru, Kazakhstan, and abstained.

Air strikes by the allies on Saturday hit three targets that Western officials said were linked to development in the and areas.

Addressing told the council, Haley said the was confident that the military strikes had crippled Syria's "We are prepared to sustain this pressure, if the Syrian regime is foolish enough to test our will," she said.

Moving to return to diplomacy, said it was working with the and Britain on a draft resolution that would address chemical weapons use, the humanitarian crisis and the future of the peace process in Syria.

The measure would provide for the creation of an inquiry to identify perpetrators of chemical weapons attacks, allow access for aid convoys and re-launch stalled peace talks in Geneva, French diplomats said.

UN Antonio Guterres, who delayed a trip to to deal with the Syria crisis, said he had asked to return to as soon as possible to chart a way forward.

Addressing the council, Guterres urged all countries to uphold international law and warned that "represents the most serious threat to international peace and security."

The United States, Britain and France have argued that military action was necessary after Assad's forces had used toxic gases multiple times in violation of international law.

has countered that the US-led action was aimed at overthrowing Assad and keeping Moscow's influence in check.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sun, April 15 2018. 00:00 IST