20 September 2013

Ethiopia: Govt Gravely Concerned Over the UN Report on Chemical Weapons Use in Syria

The Government of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia expresses its grave concern over the report of the United Nations Mission to Investigate Allegations of the Use of Chemical Weapons in the Syria Arab Republic.

This confirmed the use of chemical weapons on 21 August 2013 in the Ghouta area on the outskirts of Damascus, in which hundreds of people perished. The perpetrators of this heinous crime should be held accountable. Ethiopia greatly appreciates the high level of professionalism shown by the UN mission. It was an investigation which was undertaken under very difficult circumstances. Ethiopia, one of the first victims of poison gas in the 1930s and a party to the UN Chemical Weapons Convention, unequivocally condemns this horrendous crime.

As the Secretary General of the United Nations said, the findings of the Mission are sufficiently comprehensive and compelling. Nonetheless, it is our hope that the Mission will return to Syria as soon as possible to complete and finalize the work that it has begun. In the meantime, the Government of Ethiopia believes no effort should be spared to ensure that a political solution is found for the tragedy in Syria. It is in that spirit that Ethiopia calls on all the parties to the conflict to cooperate with the framework agreed by the Russian Federation and the United States to provide for the eventual destruction of Syria's chemical weapons.

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