Venezuela has condemned US President Barack Obama for bypassing the United Nations and asking US Congress to approve a military offensive against Syria, saying the move can lead to destruction of international institutions.
During a visit to the South American country of Guyana on Saturday, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro said that the US president was shamelessly bypassing the UN and turning Congress into his personal world court. " If multilateral bodies and the international system are disregarded like this, what lies ahead of us in this world is war, is destruction, " Maduro warned.
" It is a very serious thing indeed when President Obama tries to take the place of UN bodies, and that he has tried and convicted the Syrian government, and that he has decided to invade, to militarily attack the people of Syria, and that he has chosen the US Congress as a sort of high world court in place of the UN Security Council, " Maduro said after holding a meeting with his Guyanese counterpart Donald Ramotar.
Earlier in the day, Obama said he has decided that Washington must take military action against the Syrian government, which would mean a unilateral military strike without a UN mandate. Obama said that despite having made up his mind, he will take the case to Congress. But he added that he is prepared to order military action against the Syrian government at any time. Obama once again held the Syrian government responsible for the chemical weapons attack that killed hundreds of people in the suburbs of Damascus. On Thursday, the second meeting of the UN Security Council's permanent members ended without reaching an agreement on Syria. Representatives from the US, Britain, France, Russia, and China met on Thursday afternoon at the UN headquarters in New York for the second time in two days, but the meeting broke up after less than an hour, with the ambassadors steadily walking out. The Western members of the council have been pushing for a resolution on the use of force while Russia and China are strongly opposed to any attack on Syria. The call for military action against Syria intensified after foreign-backed opposition forces accused the government of President Bashar al-Assad of launching a chemical attack on militant strongholds in the suburbs of Damascus on August 21. Syria has strongly rejected the allegations and says terrorists carried out the deadly chemical weapons attack.