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Syria Draft Vetoed by Russia & China, As Pakistan & S. Africa Abstain

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, July 19 -- On Syria, the vetoes had been telegraphed and were delivered Thursday morning: Russia and China voted against the UK table resolution under Chapter 7 of the UN Charter. Pakistan and South Africa also abstained.

  After the vote, Ambassador Vitaly Churkin of Russia said that the draft was one sided, threatening sanctions only against the government contrary to the agreed communique in Geneva.

  He said the Western powers are fanning the flames of extremism including terrorist groups, then spoke of Wednesday's bombing in Damascus.

  India, which voted for the resolution, also called the bombing terroristic, as had China's Li Baodong to Inner City Press.

  Pakistan in explaining its abstention said that the extension of the UNSMIS mission should not have been tied to Chapter 7. Pakistan proposed a "technical rollover" of UNSMIS.

  The UK's Lyall Grant, on the other hand, said the UK is "appalled by the decisions of Russia and China to veto this draft resolution" and deny envoy Kofi Annan with the support he asked for.

But in the last week and days, Annan could have said he wanted Chapter 7, but did not. France's Gerard Araud made the same claim of what Annan wanted, adding a reference to "blood thirty dictators."

Ironically, soon after Araud finished the fourth Frenchman in a row to head UN Peacekeeping, Herve Ladsous, left the Security Council. As noted, he arranged the flights of then French foreign minister Michelle Aliot Marie on air craft of cronies of Tunisian dictator Ben Ali.

Robert Mood is out, it was further confirmed to Inner City Press which first reported his impending departure in June. Might he have a bigger role in DPKO? Watch this site.

Update: Speaking after Guatemala, US Ambassador Susan Rice called this a "dark day for Turtle Bay" and said the US will work with others to pressure Assad. She cited chemical weapons and sexual abuse, a topic on which Ban Ki-moon official Vijay Nambiar chaired a meeting on Wednesday.

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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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