Russia Rejects Sanctions on Syria, Deems UN ‘Evidence’ Unbalanced
Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov renewed his country’s rejection of using the language of ultimatums in dealing with Syria by the Arab League (AL) on Tuesday stressing that the only way to solve the Syrian crisis is through dialogue.
At a press conference with his Algerian counterpart, Murad Medelci, in Moscow, Lavrov pointed out that the armed groups in Homs province are bombarding military units, government buildings and hospitals in the city to create a human catastrophe and make a pretext for foreign interference. He stressed his country’s rejection of any sanctions against Syria, clarifying that sanctions would give opposite results, according to the SANA news agency.
In the same context, Russia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Vitaly Churkin, stressed that the Western countries are adopting incorrect stances regarding finding solution to the Syrian crisis as they are hindering internal dialogue in Syria.
During a UN Security Council session dedicated to discussing the situation in Syria, Churkin warned against the dangerous stances of the Western countries which seek to “change the regime” in Syria and hinder holding dialogue between Syria and the AL.
Russia’s stance came as the U.S. State Department singled Russia out for blocking a United Nations response.
“We are again calling on our partners on the Security Council to be willing to take action and speak out for the innocents in Syria who are suffering at the hands of the regime, including Russia,” spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said at her afternoon briefing. “And frankly, we think it is past time for the U.N. Security Council to speak up.” Nuland said a chorus of countries, including the United States, is calling on Russia and other countries on the Security Council to respond. Russia, a long-time ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, was one of four Security Council countries voting against a resolution condemning Syria.
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov also underlined that his country will not pass any new resolution against Syria whether it will directly or indirectly refer to any possibility of using force or military intervention, saying “Russia doesn’t see any bases to refer the Syrian issue to the International Criminal Court.”
“Russia’s stance on the draft resolution prepared by the Western countries against Syria is well known… Russia considers this draft resolution as unbalanced and includes unilateral accusations against the Syrian authorities, it takes no consideration the destructive acts of the armed opposition,” Gatilov said in a statement.
He added that Russia sees the evaluation of the Higher Commission of the Human Rights submitted to the UN Security Council as expressing a personal viewpoint because “we have no confidence in the existence of evidence on the information presented, they were based on emotional evaluations.”