The United Nations is coming under growing international pressure to act if Syrian activists’ claims that the government has used chemical weapons in a horrific attack on civilians are confirmed.
Anti-regime activist groups in Syria say more than 1,300 people were killed in the attack outside Damascus Wednesday, many of them women and children. Video footage and witness reports appeared to bolster claims that chemical weapons were used.
The reports prompted international outrage, with a U.N. Security Council briefing called late Wednesday to discuss the situation. However, Russia and China — consistent allies of the Syrian government — reportedly blocked a formal resolution.
Hours after the closed-door meeting, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius told CNN affiliate BFMTV that “a reaction of force must be taken” if the allegations are true.