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World ‘cannot remain inactive,’ Polish foreign ministry says after Syria strikes

Poland’s foreign ministry said on Saturday that the international community could not remain passive in the face of repeated chemical weapons attacks against civilians in Syria.

The ministry’s statement came after the United States, Britain and France launched military strikes against targets at three sites in Syria in the early hours of Saturday morning.

The missile strikes followed a suspected chemical weapons attack on civilians in the town of Douma near the Syrian capital Damascus last week.

“We view recent events in the context of repeated chemical weapons attacks against Syria’s civilian population, and as a consequence of the impunity enjoyed by their perpetrators so far,” the Polish foreign ministry said in a statement in English.

“The lack of an appropriate response encourages further attacks with the use of weapons which are both banned under international law and blatantly unhumanitarian,” the Polish foreign ministry said on its website.

It added: “In these circumstances, the international community cannot remain inactive and should take all necessary measures to prevent such attacks from being repeated in the future, especially against [a] defenseless civilian population.

“At the same time, the competent international bodies should take decisions that will enable identification of the perpetrators, and bringing them to justice.”

The foreign ministry added that “Poland will continue its international efforts aimed at complete elimination of chemical weapons. The use of such weapons is inacceptable and should be prosecuted in every circumstances and anywhere they are used.”

The ministry also said that “Poland calls for refraining from actions which could further escalate the situation.”

US President Donald Trump has said he “ordered the United States armed forces to launch precision strikes on targets associated with the chemical weapon capabilities of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad.”

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