FM: Trump’s military action in Syria not outside international law, if proven it concerns serious violations

Nicosia believes that US President Donald Trump`s decision for military action in Syria is not considered to be beyond international law and order, provided it is proven that it concerns serious violation of humanitarian law, Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides has told CNA, invited to comment on developments in the region.

Cyprus, he said, is in line with the announcement issued by the EU High Representative on the matter Federica Mogerini, adding that Nicosia wants to see an end to the bloodshed in Syria and the normalisation of the situation in the country.

“There is no doubt that the use of weapons of mass destruction and in particular the use of chemical weapons against civilians is a crime against humanity and it is absolutely condemnable,” he said.

This position, he pointed out, is coupled with the position outlined in a press release issued on Thursday, before the US reaction, and the position that “whoever is considered culprits they have to be accountable” for their actions.

“On this, there can be no discount,” he stressed.

Kasoulides recalled that Cyprus has contributed significantly to Organisation of the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) operations to remove chemical weapons from Syria, noting that today`s violation of (OPCW) decision is a serious development.

“President Trump`s decision to take military action is not considered to be outside international law when it is proven that it concerns an issue of serious violation of humanitarian law,” the Foreign Minister told CNA.

He expressed regret that a few days earlier a policy was announced which would have given priority to the fight against terrorism and in particular the Islamic State and on the internal situation in Syria, it left the Syrian people to decide about the future political solution and the future government in Syria.

“This position favours our position too. We want to see an end to the civil war in Syria and in general a normalisation of the situation in Syria, encouraging the various sides to proceed with finding a political solution,” he added.

All this has been reversed by action which questions the prospect of a speedy political normalisation of the situation and this is a pity, he added.

Invited to comment on Moscow`s position on the recent developments, given that Russia is a friendly country to Cyprus, the Minister, reiterating that indeed Russia is a friendly country, stressed that “our policy towards Russia remains traditionally the same.

Russia know that at the same time we are EU members and we are covered by joint EU decisions.”

“At present, we agree with the announcement by the EU High Representative on the matter,” he added.

On the US missile attack, from American warships in the region, the Minister said that Cyprus did not know anything about this, had no involvement and did not expect to be informed about it either.

Source CNA

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