Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Russia rejects UN resolution on Syria

Syrians hold almost daily demonstrations in support of President Assad and his reform program

Source: Press TV

Russia says it will not support a Western-backed UN resolution against Syria, describing the new proposal similar to the one Moscow vetoed in October.

Russian deputy foreign minister Gennady Gatilov said on Monday that Moscow will oppose any Security Council resolution that justifies sanctions or the use of force against Syria.

"The current Western draft has not gone too far from the October version, and, certainly, cannot be supported by us," Gennady Gatilov told Interfax news agency ahead of the UNSC debate over the latest Western-backed proposal on Syria unrest.

He also described the new draft resolution as vague and "not balanced", adding that it "leaves open the possibility of intervention in Syrian affairs." The draft proposed by the US, its Western allies as well as the Arab League, calls on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step down.

"The draft has statements in it calling on the member states to stop arms deliveries to Syria, but there is no clear line between arms contraband that some countries engage in to support extremist forces in Syria, and the legal military-technical ties with this country," Russian deputy foreign minister said.

Russia, a veto-wielding permanent member of the UN Security Council, has repeatedly said that negotiation is the only way to end months of unrest in Syria not UN resolutions and sanctions.

Gatilov said Moscow wanted any Security Council resolution on Syria to include ''inadmissibility of violence..., appeal to the authorities and opposition to begin dialogue, unacceptability of foreign armed intervention... and an imposition or threat of sanctions.”

In October, Russia and China blocked a European-drafted Security Council resolution against the Syrian government.

Russia has also rejected a recent call by the Arab League for Syrian President Assad to step down.

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