Article 1 and 2 of the Charter of the United Nations outlines the importance of recognizing the sovereignty of nations and their self-determinacy (Repertoire of the practice of the security council 1). The charter prohibits member states from forcefully intervening in the internal affairs of other states unless they either successfully seek the approval of the UN Security Council or react to protect their borders from external forces. This has played a major role in the humanitarian intervention, or lack of, in Syria. It has offered an obstacle for any nation willing to intervene in order to end the current crisis present in Syria. This restriction also covers the establishment of no fly zones and providing weapons to the rebel forces in Syria (United Nations 1). It is believed that powerful nations with permanent seats in the Security Council have used this provision to scuttle any attempt of intervention in Syria with Russia and China being the key accused.
When the allegations of the use of chemical weapons by the government of Syrian on civilians and rebels in the region of Ghouta on 19 March 2013 surfaced, the United Nations embarked on a fact finding mission and presented a damning report that highlighted the use of sarin on civilians (United Nations 1). Consequently, the UN Security Council during its sittings showed a rare unity and passed Resolution 2118 in an attempt to ensure that the use of chemical weapons on civilians is not repeated. The resolutions demanded the destruction of the chemical weapons and prohibited the manufacture, accumulation and transfer of chemical weapons by Syria. Failure to adhere to the conditions set, the Security Council may impose penalties on Syria as per Chapter VII of the UN Charter (Repertoire of the practice of the Security Council 1).
The United Nations, together with the League of Arab States, has played a key role in the search of a peaceful political solution in Syria.