RUSSIA CALLS ON UNSC TO INVESTIGATE REPORTS OF WEAPONS SMUGGLING FROM LEBANON INTO SYRIA

Posted on May 24, 2012 by

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Russian Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Alexander Lukashevich said on Thursday that Russia called on the UN Security Council (UNSC) to investigate reports on smuggling weapons into Lebanon to transport them to Syria.

In a press conference on Thursday, Lukashevich said “We are not jumping to conclusions, but these reports have to be investigated at the UN Security Council because there has been talk of grave violations of the Resolution No. 1701″

He added that there has also been talk of attempts by certain powers to abort the implementation of the plan for peaceful settlement to the crisis in Syria.

The spokesman said that Russia has seen progress in Damascus implementation of the plan of the UN envoy to Syria, Kofi Annan, not only in terms of military operations, but also in relation to the humanitarian situation in the country.

He hoped that this would help enhance stability later and improve economic and humanitarian situation in the country.

Lukashevich pointed to the drop in the level of violence after deploying UN observers as admitted by all.

”The situation in Syria remains highly tense despite some progress regarding large-scale military operations , and the situation is generally fragile due to attempts of some countries to thwart the peaceful settlement to the crisis,” Lukashevich said.

He reminded that Syria has witnessed a series of terrorist acts indicating that al-Qaida positions in Syria have been bolstered.

”Added to that, outside players who proclaim backing to Annan’s plan but do their best to thwart it on the ground and pushing the country towards a civil war are behind the terrorist activity in Syria,” added Lukashevich.

He said that about two thirds of the number of UN observers are now in Syria, numbering 250-270, 60 of which are unarmed.

On the so-called “Friends of Syria” group, Lukashevich stressed that Russia has decided to abstain from participation in the group’s next meeting in Abu Dhabi on economic development due to the Syrian government non-participation.

The spokesman said that the Russian government has received an invitation to take part in the meeting, but Russia prefers not to participate, because ”it is not possible to discuss economic development issues of a sovereign country in the absence of the representatives of its government.”

F. Allafi/M. Ismael
SANA