Power Pressed On Legality Of Syria Strike

AP

U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Samantha Power was pressed on Monday about the legality of potential U.S. military strikes against Syria and maintained that such action is “legitimate, necessary and proportionate.”

“You’re representing the U.S. at the United Nations, which has not authorized a strike,” NPR Morning Edition host Steve Inskeep asked the ambassador. “Would an American strike on Syria be legal?”

“If we take military action in this context, it will be a legitimate, necessary and proportionate response to this large-scale and indiscriminate use of chemical weapons by the [Syrian] regime,” Power responded.

Inskeep later asked Power to clarify whether she intended to say that at this stage in the process the Obama administration needed to go outside the “legal framework” to attack Syria.

In response, Power reiterated an argument she’s made over the past several days: that it has been “structurally impossible” for the United States to get support for military action through the U.N. Security Council due to Russia’s support for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime.

[h/t Huffington Post]

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Catherine Thompson is a senior editor for Talking Points Memo in New York City. She came to the site in 2013 and reported on national affairs. Previously, she worked as a research assistant to investigative reporter Wayne Barrett. She can be reached at catherine@talkingpointsmemo.com.
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