Morocco Condemns Deteriorating Situation in Middle East, Military Escalation in Syria

Morocco has condemned the deterioration of the situation in the Middle East, and the military escalation in Syria, following Friday overnight airstrikes in the country.

The airstrikes were launched by the United States, with the support from France and the United Kingdom, and targeted installations connected to the country’s chemical weapons capabilities.

US President Donald Trump announced the airstrikes Friday, saying they were in response to last week’s suspected chemical attack in the Syrian city of Douma.

Morocco, which has always respected international law, can only condemn the use of chemical weapons, particularly against innocent civilian populations, the Moroccan Foreign Ministry said in a statement made public Saturday.

“Past experiences have taught us that military options, including air strikes – no matter how justified or proportionate they can be – only make it more difficult to find a political solution, deepen the suffering of civilian victims and heighten their anti-West sentiment”, the statement said.

For Morocco, the timing chosen for this escalation, on the eve of major Arab events, and the absence of the usual appropriate consultations, may raise questions, fuel misunderstanding and indignation.

Morocco also warned against the double standards policy adopted in the management of international conflicts. In some cases, the military options come first, in other cases, respect of international legality prevails, facts that would only fan international tensions, the Foreign Ministry said.

Morocco reiterated that a solution to the Syrian crisis can only be political, and expressed hope that reason will prevail in order to reach a solution that is likely to preserve the national unity of this country and the dignity of the Syrian populations and to secure an effective fight against intolerance, extremism and terrorism, the statement added.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres cautioned, at an emergency meeting on Syria convened Saturday, against the crisis in Syria “spiraling out of control.”
He urged the Security Council members, particularly when dealing with matters of peace and security, to act consistently with the UN Charter and with international law in general.
The UN chief called on the 15 ambassadors to unite and exercise their collective role in maintaining international peace and security.

“I urge all Member States to show restraint in these dangerous circumstances and to avoid any acts that could escalate matters and worsen the suffering of the Syrian people,” he further stated.

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