Peace Palace celebrates centenary as world powers appear to move toward strikes against Syria

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is celebrating the centenary of the Peace Palace in The Hague, even as major world powers appear to be moving toward punitive military strikes against the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad for what the United States and its allies say was a deadly chemical weapons attack last week.

The timing of Wednesday's celebrations in The Hague is uncomfortable; the Peace Palace opened its doors in 1913 as a venue for peaceful resolution of conflicts and currently houses the United Nations' International Court of Justice but Washington is building support for a military attack on Syria — possibly without U.N. backing.

U.N. spokesman Farhan Haq said Tuesday that Ban's stance on Syria remains unchanged and focused on a "diplomatic solution."