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At UN on Syria, Still Waiting for Rabat, Stealth P-5 on Embassy Attacks, Day for Russia

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive

UNITED NATIONS, November 14, updated below -- Syria was the subject of most question outside the Security Council on Monday, mostly whether the Arab League announcement from Cairo over the weekend meant the Council would now impose sanctions.

  Even the proponents of such sanctions answered that this would have to await at least the next Arab League meeting in Rabat on November 16. Two Council members which did not support the previous European draft resolution on Syria told Inner City Press that Syria is a "civil war;" one said that "the Arab League is divided," at least on whether to request Security Council action.

  At 5 pm on Monday, while in the Council chamber speeches were given about terrorism, all five P-5 Permanent Representatives rushed by Inner City Press and into the Council. But none of them showed up in their country's seat to give the speech on terrorism.

  After US Ambassador Susan Rice when in, it was Alternative Representative Jeffrey DeLaurentis who have the terrorism speech. After French Ambassador Gerard Araud went in, his Deputy Briens gave the speech. This was also the case for China - but not for Russia, whose Permanent Representative Vitaly Churkin moved from room to room, or Chamber.

  Several Council members, including Permanent Representatives, did not know what the subject of the "P-5 meeting" was. "It couldn't be the press statement on embassies on Syria," one mused, saying that was "too small."

(c) UN Photo
Araud & Churkin,
@AmbassadorRice at mic, P5 meeting not shown

  But another said that was in fact the topic. Why not tell the rest of the Council? Watch this site.

Update of 5:50 pm -- Russia's and China's Permanent Representatives walked out of the Council together; the stealth P-5 meeting over.

Update of 5:57 pm -- minutes later, Ambassadors Susan Rice, Mark Lyall Grant and Gerard Araud left together. Inner City Press asked Ambassador Rice, the meeting went beyond the Syria embassies?
  "Did the agenda go beyond?" she asked then answered, "Yes."

Update of 6:03 pm -- Inner City Press has learned that the P-5 "mostly" agreed on the Syria embassy attacks Press Statement, Russia "needs" until Tuesday, so no statement tonight. And what about the other Security Council members? And so it goes at the UN.

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Click here for Sept 23, '11 about UN General Assembly

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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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