MOSCOW, October 10 (Itar-Tass) — The U.N. Security Council resolution on Syria creates conditions for the external interference, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said.
In an interview with the Profile weekly published on Monday, Lavrov said the U.N. Security Council resolution on Syria created conditions for the external interference and Russia came against this.
“The resolution put forth by our Western partners causes damage to several provisions and we come against it,” he stressed.
In particular, instead of “weapons embargo” the resolution calls for “displaying vigilance” related to all arms supplies to Syria, the minister noted. “By taking into account our partners’ capabilities we can be sure that if this resolution is adopted, they will turn “this vigilance” into the real embargo. We remember how they complied with the embargo imposed on Libya. Despite the embargo, our partners’ capabilities are well-known for us. They seek to arm one of the parties involved in the conflict.”
“In addition, the resolution contains an ultimatum, and only to the government of Bashar al-Assad: if we are not satisfied with your behaviour in a month, we will impose sanctions. Thus, we can say if the resolution is adopted, it will be refuted by its addressee. We come against this and we wouldn’t want to create conditions for the inevitable external interference,” Lavrov pointed out.
“We are concerned over the fact that when during discussions on the resolution, we proposed to include a point on the impossibility of the external interference under any circumstances, the co-authors of the resolution – Western countries – flatly refused. In our view, the West’s statement saying Syria is ‘another thing’ and ‘the Libyan scenario’ cannot be used are seriously overvalued,” the minister said.
“We call for adopting a balanced resolution, which will condemn violence of any side. In addition, we want to demand al-Assad continue reforms, it is necessary to convince the Syrian opposition to start talks and come to an agreement. We are ready to propose such resolution jointly with our Chinese partners,” Lavrov said.
Last week, the Foreign Ministry reported that Russia was ready for further work with the U.N. Security Council due to a new draft resolution on Syria that was prepared jointly with China.
The resolution, which was blocked earlier, “was based on means of easing tension and differed by the ultimatum against Damascus, and threatened to use sanctions on the Syrian authorities”, the ministry said.
“Such approach runs counter the peaceful settlement of the crisis on the basis of all-Syrian national dialogue and could incite a large-scale conflict and destabilisation in the region as a whole,” the ministry said.
On October 4, Russia and China blocked efforts of other major powers to pass a U.N. Security Council resolution on Syria, with a dramatic dual veto thwarting a call for an immediate halt to the crackdown in Syria against opponents of President Bashar al-Assad. Nine of the 15-member council countries, including the United States, voted in favour of adopting the resolution.
“From the very beginning the Russian Federation took intensive constructive efforts to work out an effective reaction from the U.N. Security Council to the dramatic events in Syria. Over a month ago Russian and Chinese partners prepared a draft resolution, which was amended later due to the concerns of other Security Council members. It was based on the respect of national sovereignty, Syria’s territorial integrity and the non-interference into its affairs, the repudiation of confrontation and an equal and substantial dialogue in order to ensure civil peace and national accord by carrying out social, economic and political reforms in the country,” the ministry said.
“Our proposals on the need for the Syrian opposition to dissociate itself from extremists and on the inadmissibility to interfere into internal affairs by military means were ignored. And due to the sad ‘Libyan lesson’ this cannot not disquiet, especially in light of the statements saying the implementation of the U.N. Security Council resolutions on Libya by the North Atlantic Alliance is a ‘model’ that means the gross abuse of U.N. Security Council resolutions in order to carry out unilateral plans on neutralising unwanted regimes,” the ministry said.
“We warned several times that we would counter the attempts to turn the Libyan scenario into a norm because this can cause damage to the authority and the reputation of the U.N. Security Council. We believe it important that all members of the world community respected the principle of supremacy of international law in full, without exemptions and double standards,” the ministry said.
“We do not advocate Bashar Al-Assad’s regime. We believe that it is unacceptable to continue violence. We condemn the suppression of peaceful demonstrations. But we cannot close eyes to speculations by the radical opposition to protest actions of the part of the Syrian population. It does not hide its extremist plans by using open terror tactics,” the ministry said.
“Russia continues the exacting work with Damascus. We call the Syrian leadership to carry out reforms as soon as possible, free all detainees, promote a dialogue with the political opposition, make wide access to the country by international mass media, and step up interaction with the LAS. This has yielded results: the reforms, even late, have started to be realised,” the ministry said.