Russia and china drop syria resolution
The other states were horrified, aid organizations embittered, the opposition in syria disappointed.
"We tried so hard to find a compromise," said morocco's un ambassador mohammed loulichki. He had presented the draft supported by arabs and europeans and had repeatedly weakened on russian urging. Respect for the arms trade, the call for free elections and the removal of president baschar al-assad were no longer found in the paper. "God bless the victims," he said. "We regret that the council has remained mute."
Immediately before the vote in the security council, the country experienced the bloodiest fighting since the uprising began eleven months ago. At least 330 people were killed and another 1,000 injured in an hours-long shelling of residential areas with tank and mortar shells in the rebel stronghold of homs, activists from the besieged city reported. In homs, there were war-related charges. The protest movement told the dpa news agency that government troops had stormed the city and then targeted neighborhoods with tank shells. "People are dying in the rubble of their collapsed houses," said activist aiman idlibi.
Syrian opposition calls russian and chinese vetoes disappointing. "This veto is at the cost of the syrian people and their blood," said naji taijara of the syrian national council. He assumes that the government was sure of the veto. "This is why the regime perpetrated the massacre in homs," taijara said.
Federal minister guido westerwelle (FDP) hopes for a new start in the council. Efforts to condemn the violence had to continue together with partners in the highest UN body and the arab league. "It is very crucial that the international community does not give up now."
Clearer words came from his U.S. Colleague hillary clinton: "it's time to be clear: are we for peace and security or are we going to be complicit in continued violence and bloodshed??"She was disappointed by the double veto: "I would like to ask you: what more do we need to know in order to act decisively in the UN security council??"
"We have failed the people of syria again," said german u.N. Ambassador peter wittig. "This is a crying shame." the veto, she said, came in the wake of the hundreds of deaths in homs and on the anniversary of the 1982 hama massacre that left tens of thousands dead. "This is the real scandal."
His french counterpart gerard araud said: "this is a sad day for this council. This is a sad day for syria and it is a sad day for the supporters of democracy." london ambassador mark lyall grant accused russia and china of foul play: "they say they wanted to prevent military intervention. But no one ever called for that, and it was never in any bill."
The clearest words came from u.S. Ambassador susan rice: "we are disgusted that some members are preventing us from doing our duty."The council has been "held hostage for months by two countries that think only of their own interests." the text did not even mention sanctions. "And it is particularly disgraceful to then also supply weapons."
"We regret this outcome," said russia's ambassador vitali churkin. "But this draft was unbalanced."Russia had wanted to find a compromise. "But these attempts were undermined by countries that wanted too much, even regime change."China's ambassador li baodong called for an end to the violence, but also said: "order must be restored in syria as soon as possible."Syria's sovereignty must remain untouched.
Syria's ambassador baschar jafari called his country "the home of tolerance". "Any peaceful demonstrator is welcome", his government was only fighting terrorists. He spoke again of an "international conspiracy to destroy syria.".
Human rights watch expressed bitterness: "the veto four months ago was irresponsible. The veto this time was simply arson."Amnesty international called the double veto "a shockingly callous betrayal of the demonstrators.".
Russia and china have so far suppressed any criticism of syria as a weapons client. Exactly four months ago, both countries vetoed a syria resolution, but were supported by india, brazil, south africa and other countries. This time all other countries voted in favor of the resolution, there were no abstentions.