Chemical weapons in Syria : we cannot simply look away

JIM - Remarks to the press by Mr. François Delattre, Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations - 7 December 2017

We are about to have an important meeting on the JIM. 

Q : Is France going to propose a new mechanism ?

The truth is that the JIM has been killed, but its heritage is more important than ever. The death of the JIM cannot be the last word. We cannot simply look away. It would be irresponsible with respect to Syria and the use of chemical weapon in Syria and also with respect of the very future of the non-proliferation regime. For these two reasons, we cannot give up.

The need to shed light on the use of chemical weapons in Syria remains more than ever essential. Our mobilization to support accountability in the country is as strong as ever. This includes ensuring the full and sincere dismantling of Syria’s chemical weapons stock, because they are too many doubts and concerns here that still need to be addressed.

More broadly speaking, those who are responsible for the use of chemical weapons in Syria must know that they will not get away with their barbarous crimes. The stakes are too high for us to tolerate such deliberate breaches of the non-proliferation regime. So it is not only a question of strategic stability here, but it also raises risks for all countries’ security and we are by definition, as Security Council, all responsible for that.

So the answer to your fair question is that we must fight to preserve the heritage of the JIM, more important than ever. And we must find ways to fight against impunity there, to fight against the use of chemical weapons there and in doing so to support the very future of the chemical non-proliferation regime. We must find ways to do so. And, as France, we will not give up.

Q : What outcomes are you looking for from this meeting on chemical weapons in Syria ?

Again, France’s goal will be to make sure that the conclusion that I have just shared with you are widely shared at the table. To call a spade a spade, what we would like is to be able to roll up our sleeves and to work with everybody at the table, I mean really everybody, in order to pursue the objectives that I’ve just mentioned.

Q : What can of timeframe are you looking for ?

On the JIM, no timeframe as this stage. It would be premature.

Dernière modification : 07/12/2017

Haut de page