On November 16, Russia vetoed the renewal of the United Nations-Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM), once again protecting the Assad regime and terrorists who are using chemical weapons in Syria. The JIM recently reported that it is confident that the Assad regime has killed more than 100 of its citizens, many of whom were children and women, with the chemical weapon sarin. The JIM has also identified ISIS as the perpetrator of sulfur mustard attacks in Syria. By vetoing the renewal of the JIM, Russia has sent a clear message that it does not value the lives of the victims of chemical weapons attacks or respect reasonable standards of international conduct regarding the use of such weapons. The United States will not stop pressing the UN Security Council to renew the JIM’s mandate so that it may continue its important work of identifying the perpetrators of heinous chemical weapons attacks, seeking justice for their victims, and sending a clear message that the use of chemical weapons will not be tolerated by anyone, anywhere.
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