People walk through debris in a town in war-shattered Syria. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi
People walk through debris in a town in war-shattered Syria. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi

The deadly Syrian chemical attack in Douma, and the limited Western air attacks against Syrian military installations, are both violations of international law. The seven-year war in Syria is a grotesque act aided and supported by all the military powers. The Middle East has become a shooting gallery where the major powers test and perfect their high-tech weaponry. A sordid display of gunboat diplomacy, where human deaths are classified as collateral damage.

Aggressive war is prohibited by the Nuremberg Tribunal and must be prosecuted by The International Criminal Court. The use of outlawed weapons violate Protocol 1 of The Geneva Convention. Preventive war and humanitarian intervention both violate the UN Charter. Forcible regime change is prohibited by the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

The use of chemical weapons and targeting of civilians in Syria and the UK constitutes a grave violation of the Geneva Convention. All of the world’s major and minor military powers have brazenly violated the UN Charter, which is the foundation of modern international law.

Farouk Araie
Johannesburg

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