Speaking at the UN during the latest session on Syria’s Idlib Province, US Ambassador Nikki Haley warned Russia and Iran would face “dire consequences” if they continue to back a Syrian military offensive against Islamist rebels in the province.
Idlib is the last major rebel-held territory in Syria, and taking it is seen by Syria and its allies as effectively ending the Syrian War. The US has insisted they oppose any moves into Idlib.
Haley went on to say that Iran and Russia are “cowards interested in a bloody military conquest” and that the US continues to intend to respond militarily if any chemical weapons are used. President Trump has also suggested that a military response could happen if he believes the offensive is a “slaughter.”
Haley was unclear what the “dire consequences” would actually be. Russian Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia reiterated that there was no reason to think Syria would use chemical weapons in Idlib, and said the presence of al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups in Idlib obliges Syria to move against them.