Document Type : Article


1 department of international law, faculty of law, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran.

2 MA, in international organizations and international law, Faculty of International relations, Tehran, Iran.

3 Assistant Prof. Faculty of Law and Political Sciences, Allameh Tabatabaee University, Tehran, Iran.


US and allies multiple attacks on Syria during 2014-2018 with the excuses of, inter alia, fighting against ISIS and humanitarian intervention to prevent claimed use of chemical weapons is in breach of Article 2(4) of the UN Charter. Several unacceptable arguments including: “The unwilling and unable theory”, “Iraq collective self-defense against ISIS in Syria”, “The creative and constructive ambiguity of S/RES/2249” and “Implied consent or passive consent theory” have been put forwarded to justify US-led coalition attacks on ISIS in Syria. On the other hand, in an attempt to justify attacks on so-called Syrian chemical facilities, it has been explicitly or implicitly resorted to some invalid arguments including: “Strikes on Syria in retaliation for chemical attack”, “Humanitarian intervention for Chemical Weapons Convention implementation” and “The distinction between the legitimacy and legality of military intervention”. In order to answer the question that “Why do the US and allies attacks against Syria during 2014-2018 are illegal?”, this paper descriptively and analytically consider the deployed arguments supporting the above-mentioned attacks and examines this hypothesis: “the aforementioned attacks are international wrongful acts as they cannot be considered as self-defense or collective security system outlined respectively in Article 51 and Article 42 of the UN Charter. On the other hand, the valid consent of Syria, which may preclude the wrongfulness of these attacks, has not been obtained; so, US and allies’ attacks against Syria during 2014-2018 are illegal”.


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