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On Syria, Russia Circulates Resolution, 3 More Months, Rice Tells ICP It's Insufficient

By Matthew Russell Lee, Partial Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, July 10, updated & draft now here -- Russia late Tuesday afternoon circulated a draft resolution on Syria to the other 14 Security Council members, Deputy Permanent Representative Pankin told the press at 6 pm in front of the Council.

Inner City Press asked Pankin if Russia's proposal would cut the military component of the UN Mission in Syria by 50%, as UN Peacekeeping chief Herve Ladsous proposed in a closed door meeting of the Troop Contributing Countries.

Now, Inner City Press understands that Ladsous wanted to cut military by 75%, consistent with a Western push to even pull the Mission out. Thus, Russia steps in with a resolution to keep the Mission in, with "creative ambiguity" as Pankin put it, for at least the next three months.

As US Ambassador Susan Rice walked out as Pankin fielded questions from a reporter for a paper in Lebanon, Inner City Press went over and asked her what she thought of the Russian draft. She smiled and told Inner City Press, exclusively it seems, that is is "insufficient."

Later Inner City Press asked all and sundry about General Robert Mood leaving. "Some say he doesn't want to renew his contract," came one answer. "He is being pushed out," others say, "as being too straight, not pro-West enough."

As Inner City Press has noted, Mood would be good for this and other reasons as a head of UN Peacekeeping. Watch this site.

Update: Inner City Press asked July's Council president Nestor Osorio, what do you think of the Russian draft? He pointed to what he was holding and said, I am studying it.

  One non-Western (and of course, non-Russian) member of the Council, when Inner City Press asked about the draft said, "I love it."

Update of 6:59 pm -- another non-Western Council member came and told Inner City Press, of the Russian draft, it is "very good, very well timed."

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These reports are usually also available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis.

Click here for a Reuters AlertNet piece by this correspondent about Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army. Click here for an earlier Reuters AlertNet piece about the Somali National Reconciliation Congress, and the UN's $200,000 contribution from an undefined trust fund.  Video Analysis here

Click here for Sept 26, 2011 New Yorker on Inner City Press at UN

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