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Russia ready to support resolution on Syria, opposes new sanctions - Lavrov

September 20, 2011, 19:49 UTC+3

The Russian draft resolution “has been laid on the negotiations table

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UN, September 20 (Itar-Tass) —— Russia is ready to support the UN Security Council resolution on Syria but it objects to new sanctions, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Tuesday.

“Russia is ready to support the resolution on Syria in order to put an end to provocations in that country. No one needs the recurrence of the Libyan events,” he said.

Lavrov said he had discussed the issue with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The Russian position is well known: “We are not only ready to support the resolution on Syria but we also have our own draft, which was distributed at the UN Security Council several weeks ago to prevent any violence and provocations made by armed groups of people in protest rallies. Another goal of the resolution is to encourage negotiations between the sides,” Lavrov said.

“It is necessary to start the discussion of the Syrian future and the reforms, which President Bashar al-Assad offers although the offer is late, and to agree on free and fair parliamentary elections to meet international standards,” he said.

The Russian draft resolution “has been laid on the negotiations table,” Lavrov said.

Moscow also actively supports the mediating efforts of the League of Arab States, he said.

Asked by Itar-Tass whether Russia was considering a possibility of international sanctions on Syria, Lavrov said, “The United States and the European Union had imposed unilateral sanctions.” “We have always said that sanctions do not help. We think it wrong to focus on sanctions instead of discussing a comprehensive strategy,” he said.


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