Addressing reporters during a press conference in Beijing on Monday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said any military action that bypasses the UN Security Council is in breach of international law, and only complicates the Syrian conflict.
“Under the UN Charter, there are clear statements about the circumstances in which the use of force is permissible. The military strikes launched by the United States, the UK and France violate the basic principles of international law to ban the use of force and violate the UN Charter.
“The use of force under the pretext of punishing and retaliating [against] the use of chemical weapons also violates international law as present international law also bans the use of force in retaliation for illegitimate actions. Bypassing the United Nations Security Council, and under the pretext of adopting a unilateral humanitarian intervention also violate international law,” she said, Press TV reported.
The senior Chinese official noted that her country believes a comprehensive, impartial and objective investigation should be carried out into the alleged chemical weapons attack against the city of Douma, located about 10 kilometers northeast of the Syrian capital Damascus.
“China's stance on chemical weapons is clear. We oppose to the use of chemical weapons by any country, any organization or anyone for any purpose. China advocates a comprehensive, impartial and objective investigation into the suspected use of chemical weapons so as to reach a reliable conclusion that could withstand the test of time and facts,” Hua said.
“We support an on-site investigation to Syria by a group from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW). Before that, all the parties cannot make a pre-judgment,” she pointed out.
Hua further described a political settlement as the only realistic option to resolve the Syrian crisis.
“I want to stress that there is no way out for any military solution to the Syrian issue as a political solution is the only realistic choice. Any attempt to resort to the use of force can only intensify regional tensions and complicate the issue,” the Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman noted.
Early on Saturday, the US, Britain and France carried out a string of airstrikes against Syria over a suspected chemical attack against Douma. Washington and its allies blamed Damascus for the suspected assault.
The Syrian government has strongly denied the allegation, calling on OPCW to send a fact-finding mission for investigations.
However, the US and is allies carried out the strike on the day the mission just arrived in Damascus.
Pentagon said in a statement that at least 58 missiles had struck Shayrat airbase in the western Syrian city of Homs. An unnamed US official said Tomahawk missiles were used in the strikes.
The United Kingdom's Royal Air Force said four Tornado GR4s fighter jets joined the operation, while France said it had deployed Mirage and Rafale fighter jets.
Russian General Staff spokesman General Sergei Rudskoy, however, said Syrian air defense systems had intercepted at least 71 cruise missiles fired during the US-led aggression.
Speaking at a news conference in Moscow on Saturday, Rudskoy said at least 103 cruise missiles, including Tomahawks, had been fired into a number of targets in Syria.
“Russia has fully restored the air defense system of Syria, and it continues to improve it over the last six months,” he said.