The UN Security Council is examining France and Britain’s draft resolution, which condemns the ongoing violence in Syria. Russia and China said they would oppose any toughly-worded documents or hasty action.
Following two hours of closed-door consultations within the UN Security Council, France and the UK did not garner enough support for a resolution they introduced on Syria. Discussions at the UN will continue over the next few days, as the UK and France continue campaigning for support.
The draft resolution — which calls on Damascus to stop using violence against protestors, demands those responsible for civilian casualties be held accountable, and allows for humanitarian aid to be sent to Syria — will be presented to the UN Security Council. The draft also urges other countries not to supply weapons to Damascus.
The resolution already has support from Germany and Portugal, British Prime Minister David Cameron said on Wednesday. “If anyone votes against that resolution or tries to veto it, that should be on their conscience,” he added.
Earlier on Monday, French Foreign minister Alain Juppe said the UN cannot just silently watch as the situation develops there. He believes reforms in Syria “are dead” and that President Bashar Assad has no right to rule the country anymore.
Russia and China, both veto-wielding members of the UN Security Council, said they would oppose a resolution on Syria. “The international community is drowning in [the Libyan situation]. That’s why regarding Syria we believe that solutions through several political channels must be found rather than conditions for sliding into a new armed conflict be made,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Tuesday.
Over two months, Syria has been facing increasingly violent protest against Assad’s regime, with the government responding with tough actions. Activists accuse the government of brutality and crimes against its own people, while the government says the riots have been sponsored from abroad and are mostly ignited by armed bandits.
Russian Ambassador to the UN Vitaly Churkin believes diplomacy should be used for solving political problems not creating conditions for new armed conflict. Passing more and more resolutions puts the international community in a position where it is picking sides within an internal conflict.
“There is concern over interfering in Syrian affairs, mainly due to escalation of violence because it may be misinterpreted by the destructive opposition forces who are in change of power in Damascus,” he said. “Such a position will definitely lead to more bloodshed and an escalation of violence and it’s important to avoid that. Dialogue is needed. And we remember that in Libya it also started with defending human rights, which ended up with the war led by the coalition”.
The UN resolution on Libya was followed by the military intervention by the US and its allies.
Investigative journalist Michel Collon believes it is important to consider why the US wants to overrule the governments in Libya and Syria.
“It’s because these two regimes have been for a long time opposed to the domination of the United States in the Middle East, opposed to the Israeli colonialism. It has been demonstrated recently, also in the Washington Post, that all these groups and opposition media were financed by the US themselves, by the CIA, the National Endowment for Democracy,” said Collon.
Meanwhile, “the resolutions are only a way to increase the tension and to prepare indeed future aggressions,” he added.