U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley on Wednesday warned the regime of Syrian President Bashar al- Assad, along with its allies Russia and Iran, not to use chemical weapons against the last rebel stronghold in Syria, suggesting the Trump administration will respond with military action if they do use such weapons.
Haley issued the warning on Fox News’ “Special Report,” where she discussed a range of issues with host Bret Baier, including the possibility of the Assad regime using chemical weapons against the Syrian people in an offensive to retake Idlib province in northwestern Syria.
“Twice we have warned you not to use chemical weapons, twice you have used them, and twice President Trump has acted,” Haley said. “Don’t test us again, because I think the odds are very much against them.”
Haley was referring to two different times when the Trump administration launched military strikes against the Syrian government in response to it using chemical weapons on civilians—first in April 2017, then in April 2018.
Haley also discussed what took place in U.N. Security Council meetings held this week to address the situation in Idlib.
“The sternest warnings came down from most members of the Security Council telling them that not just chemical weapons would be addressed by the United States and our allies, but any offensive on the civilian people in Idlib was going to be dealt with,” she said.
Haley also discussed the crisis in Venezuela, saying that Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro cannot remain in power but clarifying that the U.S. is not instigating a coup to remove him.
“I’m not going to address rumors about a coup,” she said. “What I will tell you is Maduro needs to go. I was on the Venezuelan border about a month ago, and I saw literally a million people cross that border every day for their only meal.”
Baier also asked Haely about the Trump administration’s policy toward Iran. Haley defended the reimposition of U.S. sanctions against Tehran, saying the U.S. is on the side of the Iranian people against their government.
Near the end of the interview, Haley addressed the latest executive order that President Donald Trump signed on Wednesday. The order authorizes new sanctions on foreign countries or individuals that try to interfere in U.S. elections.
“The president is saying if you do it, you will pay,” Haley said.