Home > News > World
Thursday January 9, 2014 MYT 8:45:01 AM
Thursday January 9, 2014 MYT 8:46:19 AM
UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - Russia blocked a U.N. Security Council statement on Wednesday that would have expressed outrage at deadly airstrikes by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's forces and condemned the use of missiles and "barrel bombs" in towns, U.N. diplomats said.
Russia, a staunch Assad ally, opposed a similar statement on December 19 that would have condemned attacks by Syrian government troops on civilians. Russia, joined by China, has also vetoed three Security Council resolutions that would have condemned Assad's government and threatened it with sanctions.
The council could not reach agreement on Wednesday because amendments proposed by Russia were "clearly designed to rob the statement of any reference to what has happened in Aleppo," said a U.N. diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity.
A spokesman for the Russian mission declined to comment.
The British-drafted statement would have had the council express outrage at daily airstrikes by the Syrian government in the northern city of Aleppo where it said more than 700 people have been killed and 3,000 injured since December 15.
Syrian authorities have said they are battling rebels controlling large portions of Aleppo, once Syria's business hub and largest city, which is now divided between government and rebel forces.
The longstanding deadlock on the Security Council was briefly broken in late September and early October when the 15-nation body agreed a resolution demanding the eradication of Syria's chemical weapons program and a statement calling for increased aid access and humanitarian pauses in the fighting.
One of the main reasons for that sudden agreement, say diplomats, was U.S. President Barack Obama's threats to launch missile strikes against Syria for an August 21 sarin gas attack that killed hundreds. Washington and its European allies blamed Assad's forces for the August 21 incident, while the government said the rebels were responsible.
More than 100,000 people have been killed and millions forced from their homes in Syria's nearly three-year civil war.
(Reporting by Michelle Nichols and Louis Charbonneau; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)
U.S. gives up on U.N. Security Council in Syria crisis, blames Russia
Analysis: U.S. could look beyond U.N. Security Council in any Syria strike
Kerry says U.N. Security Council must act on Syria
Russia and U.S. in tit for tat at United Nations over Sudan, South Sudan
Obama makes case for punishing Syria, but possible delays loom
Russia may resume gas supply next week if Ukraine pays $2.2 billion - Gazprom
Burkina Faso army colonel says president has left power - TV
Spain says will seek to block Catalan watered-down vote on independence
Thousands denounce HSBC board member's likening of Hong Kong people to freed slaves
Fire at French public radio complex, staff evacuated
Ukraine's Poroshenko backs Yatseniuk for new term as prime minister
Explore Tibet’s Potala Palace’s spiritual prowess
Tencent teams up with IBM to offer business software over the cloud
Greek PM appoints new defence, development ministers
Copyright © 1995-2014 Star Publications (M) Bhd (Co No 10894-D)