Syria calls on UN to immediately halt US-led strikes

Syria calls on UN to immediately halt US-led strikes
Sun May 28, 2017 11:30:19

Syria has demanded an immediate halt to US-led airstrikes after another 35 civilians were killed by a coalition airstrike this week, a report said.

(Tasnim) -- In a letter to the UN, Damascus said these strikes create chaos and help terrorists launch attacks against government troops, Syria’s official SANA news agency reported.

“Syria condemns the attacks of the alliance which target civilians and cause massive material damage to the infrastructure, facilities, and properties in Syria,” the Foreign and Expatriates Ministry said in a letter addressed to the UN Secretary-General and the President of Security Council.

At least 35 civilians, including women and children, were killed on Thursday night when US-led coalition warplanes targeted the city of Al Mayadeen in the southeastern countryside of Deir ez-Zor province.

Damascus denounced the strike as an attack on “Syria’s sovereignty and territorial integrity under the pretext of combating terrorism.”

While the coalition admitted it had conducted strikes near Al-Mayadin on May 25 and 26, in a statement to Reuters, its spokesman said they were still “assessing the results.”

The action of the US and its coalition partners only contribute to spreading “chaos and destruction” which benefit terrorists, “particularly ISIS and Jabhat al-Nusra,” Damascus said.

The letter also accused the coalition of often targeting the “Syrian Army which is fighting terrorism,” noting, that such strikes conveniently coincide with offensives launched by ISIS and al-Nusra on the ground.

The ministry reminded the UN that since the US has never received Damascus’ consent to operate in their airspace, the coalition’s actions “blatantly” contradict UN Security Council’s resolutions, international law and international humanitarian law.

“Syria reiterates the importance of halting the illegal US-led coalition’s actions and implementing Security Council resolutions related to counter-terrorism, including resolution no. 2253," the letter said, according to the state news agency.

Over the past six years, Syria has been fighting foreign-sponsored militancy. UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura estimated in August that more than 400,000 people had been killed in the Syrian crisis until then. The UN has stopped its official casualty count in Syria, citing its inability to verify the figures it receives from various sources.

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