During the discussion of Resolution 2401 on the ceasefire and the humanitarian pause in Syria in the UN Security Council on March 12, US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley implied that the US might launch military strikes at Syria similar to last April when such actions were based on unfounded unilateral US accusations of the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian Government. Russia and Syria were also accused of violating the ceasefire and causing the suffering of civilians, primarily in East Ghouta.

Such unfounded aggressive statements by the US Ambassador evoke indignation and extreme concern. This is the height of hypocrisy – to hear assurances of support for the political process in Syria on behalf of the US that is occupying a considerable part of Syrian territory in violation of the fundamental principles of international law and the UN Charter. In effect, Washington is going all out to protect and retain terrorist groups operating near Damascus and in other Syrian provinces. The real situation in the Damascus suburb of East Ghouta is being completely distorted in the process. Terrorists continue the systematic shelling of residential buildings in the Syrian capital from this suburb. The crimes of terrorists are not mentioned at all, including the shooting of those who would like to use humanitarian corridors. At the same time, nothing is said about the fact that real humanitarian relief is coming to this region only from the Russian Centre for Reconciliation of the Opposing Sides and with its assistance.

Attempts by the US and its allies to distort the meaning of UN Security Council Resolution 2401 that provides for the continued resolute struggle against ISIS, al-Nusra and other terrorist groups are absolutely unacceptable.

Against the background of the US Ambassador’s bellicose statements, there is growing concern that the militants may stage a false chemical attack by Syrian government forces against civilians to justify US unilateral strikes against Damascus and Syrian state-owned facilities.

Such criminal actions could create a threat to the life of Russian military advisors, including representatives of the Centre for Reconciliation of the Opposing Sides who are at offices in Damascus and the Syrian Defence Ministry’s facilities. In this case the necessary reciprocal measures will be taken.