EU warns of fresh economic sanctions on Syria, UN Security Council meets following airstrikes on Russia’s request

The European Union on Saturday warned of fresh economic sanctions, should Syria continue to use chemical weapons. It further called on all countries, “notably Russia and Iran, to use their influence to prevent any further use of chemical weapons, notably by the Syrian regime.” The EU last imposed sanctions on Syria in July 2017 and March 2018. The statement came shortly after US, UK and French forces struck Syria with over 100 missiles. In response to the airstrikes the UN Security Council met on Saturday afternoon at Russia’s request. See more here and here.

Philippines President apologises for calling Rohingya crisis 'genocide'

The President of the Philippines has apologised to Burmese leader Aung San Suu Kyi for saying genocide was taking placing in Myanmar. President Duterte said last week that his country would provide sanctuary for Ronhingya muslims fleeing “genocide”, angering the Myanmar government. However the president has since clarified his remarks as being aimed at the West’s refusal to take in refugees. In remarks aimed at Aung Sun Suu Kyi, President Duterte said, “I will apologize to you, but if you have noticed my statement was almost a satire.” “I am not ready to intervene in your (internal affairs...

Myanmar expresses concern at ICC attempt to seek jurisdiction over deportations of Rohingya

Myanmar’s government expressed “serious concern” over the International Criminal Court prosecutor seeking jurisdiction over alleged deportations of Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar to Bangladesh, reports Reuters. The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court Fatou Bensouda, On Monday, asked it to rule on whether it has jurisdiction over the deportations of the Rohingya people from Myanmar to Bangladesh. Although Myanmar has not signed the Rome statute, Bangladesh has. The filing submitted by Ms Bensouda said, “The persecution seeks.. to verify that the curt has territorial jurisdiction when...

US, UK and France launch airstrikes on Syria in response to chemical weapons attack

The US, UK and France launched air strikes targeting an Syrian army base early on Saturday morning reports Reuters. The strikes, in response to a chemical weapons attack that killed dozens last weekend, marked the international community’s biggest intervention since the start of the 7 year war in Syria. US president Donald Trump said he was prepared to sustain military action if Syria continued to use chemical weapons. Speaking early on Saturday, British Prime Minister Theresa May said, there was no alternative to military action, adding she had authorised British forces to conduct precision...

Syria has used chemical weapons 50 times, claims US

The United States claimed on Friday that the Syrian government has launched at least 50 chemical weapons attacks since violence broke out in the region 7 years ago, as tensions with Russia sharply increased. The claim comes after an attack in Douma earlier this month which killed dozens of people. The US, UK and France have all blamed the Syrian regime, led by president Bashar al-Assad. “Let’s be clear: Assad’s most recent use of poison gas against the people of Douma was not his first, second, third, or even 49th use of chemical weapons,” US ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley told...

More deaths in Gaza as protests continue

The Palestinian health ministry said that a 28 year old man has died after being shot by Israeli troops as protests continued along the Gaza-Israel border for a third consecutive week. The Israeli military confirmed that at least 10,000 people demonstrated in five locations on Friday, describing the protests as “rioting”. Meanwhile, the Palestinian health ministry said that at least 968 people were wounded by gunfire and tear gas Friday, with at least 1 death. The Palestine Red Crescent Society also reported that one of its medics was shot in the knee. So far, around 35 Palestinians have been...

US warns of imminent airstrikes on Syria, UK holds Syria regime responsible for chemical attacks

US President Donald Trump warned Russia on Wednesday of imminent military action in Syria in response to confirmed chemical weapons usage in Douma. The US president, on social media, said that missiles “will be coming” whilst criticising Russia’s support to the Assad regime. “Russia vows to shoot down any and all missiles fired at Syria. Get ready Russia, because they will be coming, nice and new and ‘smart!’” the US President wrote on Twitter. France is likely to join any military action against Syria, whilst the UK is under pressure to support US efforts reports the times.co.uk. Commenting...

Myanmar sentences 7 soldiers for Rohingya killings in internationally scrutinised case

Seven Myanmar soldiers have been sentenced to prison for their role in the killings of 10 Rohingya Muslim men, reports the BBC. The soldiers will serve 10 years, with hard labour for “contributing and participating in murder,” said the military press statement. Four officers and three non-officers were found guilty for their part in the killings in the village of Inn DIN. The killings received intense scrutiny from the international community after two Reuters journalists who were investigating the killings were arrested in Myanmar. The Reuters journalists are still currently held in prison...

US, UK and France agree on strong response to Syria chemical weapons attack

British Prime Minister Theresa May joined calls from US President Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron for a strong response to reports of a chemical weapons attack in Syria. Speaking after telephone calls with both leaders, Ms May said the chemical weapons attacks in Syria where “utterly reprehensible.” The Prime Minister’s spokeswoman said, “They agreed that the international community needed to respond to uphold the worldwide prohibition on the use of chemical weapons.” US President Donald Trump, on Monday, said the US response would be quick and forceful once responsibility...

Dozens dead in suspected chemical attack in Syria

Dozens of people have been killed after a suspected chemical attack on the rebel held enclave of Douma on Sunday, an assault that is being blamed on the Syrian government. The attack on Saturday evening is expected to be a topic of discussion for the UN Security Council on Monday. Though the number of deaths has not yet been confirmed, the Union of Medical Care and Relief Organizations, told BBC News that 70 people had been killed. The attack has drawn condemnation from the European Union, who has called for an "immediate response by the international community" and the British Foreign Office...

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