10 June 2011, 12:23

Russia, China block 2nd draft of resolution on Syria

Russia, China block 2nd draft of resolution on Syria
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Russia and China have blocked the vote on the second variant of the resolution on Syria submitted by France, Britain, Germany and Portugal with the assistance from the US. South Africa, India and Brazil supported the position of Russia and China.

Russia and China have blocked the vote on the second variant of the resolution on Syria submitted by France, Britain, Germany and Portugal with the assistance from the US. South Africa, India and Brazil supported the position of Russia and China.

Before submitting the new variant of the resolution the authors claimed that they had thoroughly revised the language of the document. But according to the Russian officials in the UN, the changes were very insignificant. The resolution condemns the use of force by the Syrian government against civilians but does not contain any appeals to ban weapons supplies to Syria or to introduce any sanctions. The new variant of the resolution urges an independent investigation of the murders committed during the repression of the anti-governmental demonstrations. The relevant provision states that if such things continue they will be regarded as crimes against humanity.

Nevertheless Moscow and some of its colleagues in the UN’s Security Council doubted the approval of the new version of the resolution, fearing that the interference into the Syrian conflict may on the contrary aggravate the situation in that country. Russia’s envoy to the UN Vitaly Churkin said that the destructive oppositional forces in Syria, which are still reluctant to the dialogue with the authorities, may wrongly interpret the UN Security Council’s position.

In an interview with the “Voice of Russia” Vladimir Akhmedov, a historian and an expert on the Middle East, draws attention to another potential danger in the situation around Syria:    

"What arouses concern is that in this resolution of Britain and France declares illegitimacy of the regime of Bashar Assad. That means that the approval of the resolution will make it possible for others countries to doubt the legitimacy of the regime on the base of this document."

On Thursday, Russia’s Foreign Ministry said that Moscow is against the resolution on Syria as such. According to the representative of the Foreign Ministry Alexander Lukashevich, Moscow knows well how “widely” the Western countries interpret the UN documents. There is no guarantee that the West won’t interpret the resolution on Syria the way it interpreted the decision of the Security Council on Libya, an expert in studies Irina Zvyagelskaya said.

In its turn this will mean the new stage of tension in Syria and the signal to interfere into the Syrian domestic conflict from outside.

After a closed meeting of the UN’s Security Council neither the date of the new consultations nor the exact terms of vote on the third variant of the resolution have been set. Probably the Russian-Chinese initiative to resolve the Syrian conflict not with the help of the Security Council but with the help of the parties involved in the conflict is becoming more popular within the UN.

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