The U.N. Security Council has voted unanimously to impose tougher sanctions on Syria, the Syrian regime and other armed groups accused of crimes against humanity.
The United States and France are among the countries that voted in favor of the resolution, with the vote to be taken after President Donald Trump said he would veto the resolution if it didn’t contain a measure to punish Assad for the use of chemical weapons against his own people.
U.S.-backed rebels are fighting to overthrow Assad in a conflict that has killed thousands of people.
In Syria, a coalition of Syrian rebel groups called the Syrian Democratic Forces said Monday that it had captured the al-Shadadi military base, home to al-Qaeda’s Syria branch, and is expected to make gains in the city.
The SDF captured the base in the northern province of Idlib on Thursday.
The move by the Syrian government and Russia to take control of the base, a strategic location along the country’s main highway linking the capital Damascus with the rest of the country, came hours after Trump said Assad had been “responsible for killing tens of thousands of innocent civilians” in the civil war.
In a statement Monday, the SDF said it had recaptured the base and was working with the U.K.-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights to establish the precise location of the chemical weapons site.
The U.R. and other rights groups have documented more than a dozen alleged chemical weapons attacks in the country in recent months, but the SDP and its allies deny the charges.
Syria has been under a U.P. and Russia-brokered cease-fire since 2016.
The resolution, which has not been endorsed by the U .
General Assembly, was drafted by Russia and France.
The U .
S. was not among the 54 countries voting in favor, but Trump said the resolution would not go far enough to punish the Assad government for using chemical weapons.
The Syrian regime has denied the allegations, which include a claim that the poison gas it used in the Khan Sheikhoun attack was used by the opposition.
The president said last week he would sign the measure into law, which would extend the U