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UNSC discusses Russia, US backed Syria resolution
September 27, 2013, 5:15 am

Russia and China both permanent members of the UNSC have repeatedly insisted that military intervention is unacceptable [Getty Images]

Russia and China both permanent members of the UNSC have repeatedly insisted that military intervention is unacceptable [Getty Images]

The UN Security Council has discussed a draft resolution to eliminate Syria’s chemical weapons and could vote as early as late Friday on it, Russia’s UN envoy Vitaly Churkin said.

The Russian diplomat said the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) must first approve its roadmap for the destruction of Syrian chemical weapons because it will be included in the UN resolution.

The Hague-based body will be in charge of securing and destroying the Syrian stockpiles of chemical weapons in line with the US-Russian plan.

“We are hoping that, according to the procedure, the OPCW executive council will be able to make the decision within 24 hours,” Churkin told reporters late on Thursday.

“If it happens in The Hague tomorrow night, that is, when it is 3 or 4 p.m. here in New York, we will be able to vote [on the UN resolution] at 8 p.m.,” Churkin said.

Russia and the US said they finally reached an agreement on a UN Security Council resolution to rid Syria of chemical weapons.

Mark Lyall Grant, Britain’s UN ambassador, said the Security Council permanent members agreed on a “binding and enforceable draft …resolution”.

The agreement, however, does not allow military action to enforce Syria’s compliance with the US-Russian plan to eliminate Syria’s chemical weapons, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Thursday.

The draft resolution to be submitted to other Security Council members “does not envision any actions based on Chapter 7 of the UN Charter,” which allows for military action to restore peace and security, Lavrov said following a meeting with US Secretary of State John Kerry.

Russia and China have on multiple occasions vetoed Western-backed resolutions in the UNSC against President Bashar al-Assad.

Washington has insisted that the threat of military force is crucial to ensuring that the government of Assad abides by the terms of the US-Russia plan to secure and destroy Syria’s chemical stockpiles.
Russia and China both permanent members of the UNSC have repeatedly insisted that military intervention is unacceptable.

The document was submitted to other Security Council members for discussion, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told reporters in New York.

The US has accused Assad’s government of responsibility for an August 21 chemical weapons attack outside Damascus that Washington claims left more than 1,400 dead.

Russian officials, including President Vladimir Putin, have repeatedly suggested in recent weeks that they have evidence showing the attack was likely carried out by Syrian rebels seeking to frame Assad in order to secure outside military intervention against government forces.

Sergei Ryabkov, Russia’s deputy foreign minister, has announced that his country was ready to help guard and destroy Syrian chemical weapons sites, but it would not ship any of the chemical arms to Russia for destruction.

 

Source: Agencies

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