Russian UN envoy accuses US of violating international law in Syria
France and Britain said the US response was 'appropriate' and laid the blame on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. (In picture: Russia deputy ambassador to UN Vladimir Safronkov) Photograph: (AFP)
Russia's UN envoy accused the United States on Friday of violating international law by carrying out military strikes in Syria.
"The United States attacked the territory of sovereign Syria. We describe that attack as a flagrant violation of international law and an act of aggression," Deputy Ambassador Vladimir Safronkov told the Security Council.
The council was meeting in an emergency session after the United States launched a barrage of missile strikes on a Syrian air base in retaliation for a suspected chemical attack.
France and Britain said the US response was "appropriate" and laid the blame on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Eighty-six people including at least 27 children died in the suspected attack on Tuesday in Khan Sheikhun, a rebel-held town in Syria's Idlib province.
Results from post-mortems performed on victims point to exposure to the deadly sarin nerve agent, according to Turkish health officials.
The council meeting was called by Bolivia, which also branded the US strikes a violation of international law.
Bolivian Ambassador Sacha Lorenti said the United States had behaved like "investigator, attorney, judge and executioner" in Syria.
"This is not what international law is all about," he told reporters.