Asked about what his message would be to the Syrians who had lost their faith in the United Nations since their country has been devastated by war for seven years, Guterres recalled that there were various forces from across the world, as well as multiple divides between them in Syria.
"It’s not the UN that will be able to solve the problem … It is obviously naive to think that the UN can magically solve that problem, especially when the Security Council is so divided as it is," Guterres said.
The UN secretary-general also noted that the current situation around Syria had shown that "the Cold War is back." However, at present, there are no two homogeneous well-controlled blocks, and no mechanisms of control over the situation, which existed in the Cold War era.
The Syrian authorities denied these claims. Russia, which supports Syrian President Bashar Assad, condemned the western strikes, and said it had warned in advance that provocations with the use of chemical weapons might be staged in Syria, aimed at putting the blame for such attacks on the government, and thus justifying external aggression against Syria.
The Fact-Finding mission of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) is currently deployed in the Middle Eastern country, investigating into the reported Douma chemical attack.
The disagreements within the UN Security Council in relation to Syria have reflected in the council's recent failure to adopt either the Russian-drafted or the US-drafted resolutions on the alleged Douma chemical weapons attack.