|Putin reiterates objection to ‘aggression’ against Syria
Russian President Vladimir Putin urged the West to present convincing evidence of the alleged chemical weapons attack in Syria to the UN Security Council, saying Moscow would react decisively if it was proven who was behind the crime.
In an interview with state-run Channel One television ahead of the G20 summit in Saint Petersburg this week, Putin warned the West that military action against Syria without UN Security Council backing would be considered an “aggression.’’
Asked whether Russia would agree with US-led military strikes if it was proven that Syria regime had carried out the chemical attack outside Damascus on August 21, Putin replied: “I do not exclude that.''
But he said the West still needed to put forward watertight proof, AFP reports.
“If there is evidence that chemical weapons were used, and by the regular army, ... then this evidence must be presented to the UN Security Council. And it must be convincing,'' Putin said.
If there was clear proof Russia “will be ready to act in the most decisive and serious way,'' Putin said.
But he said it would be unacceptable for the West to strike Syria without the assent of the UN Security Council.
“Only the UN Security Council can give approval for the use of force against another state,'' Putin said.
“Any other ways to justify the use of force against another sovereign and independent state are unacceptable and cannot be qualified as anything other than aggression,'' Putin said.