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UNSC vetoes two rival resolutions on Aleppo

Published: October 9, 2016, 1:09 pm

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    The UN Security Council (UNSC) vetoed two rival resolutions proposed by Russia and France with regard to the escalating situation in Aleppo, Syria on Saturday.

    The French proposal had implied “upgraded” coordination of monitoring in the area and reactivating the cessation of hostilities in city. One of the key points of the proposal had been the attempt to halt Syrian and Russian bombardment of East Aleppo.

    Moscow and Damascus repeatedly stressed they are targeting terrorist hideouts there, which have been jeopardizing the cessation of hostilities.

    On September 28 the French mission to the UN claimed that two hospitals in east-Aleppo had been bombed. It documented this in a tweet with a picture of destroyed buildings in Gaza. The French quickly deleted the tweet after the use of erroneous visual material became known.

    It is not the first time such invalid claims and willful obfuscations have been made by certain officials.

    The US Secretary of State John Kerry, before talks with the French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault on the vetoed UN resolution, said during a press event yesterday:

    “Last night, the regime attacked yet another hospital, and 20 people were killed and 100 people were wounded. And Russia and the regime owe the world more than an explanation about why they keep hitting hospitals and medical facilities and children and women. These are acts that beg for an appropriate investigation of war crimes. And those who commit these would and should be held accountable for these actions.”

    But no opposition groups have mentioned the extremely grave incident and no press agency has a record of it.

    President Bashar al-Assad meanwhile affirmed that the United States did not have the will to reach an agreement on Syria, and that had been known in advance that the US agreement with Russia would not succeed because the main part of that agreement was to attack al-Nusra which was an American card in Syria.

    In an interview given to Denmark’s TV 2 channel, President al-Assad said that “moderate opposition” was a myth, and that reaching a political solution requires fighting terrorism, asserting that it was unacceptable that terrorists take control of any part of Syria.

    The Russian draft strongly backed calls by the UN envoy to Syria, Staffan de Mistura to allow safe exit for Nusra terrorists in order to bring relief to Aleppo. On Thursday De Mistura said he was willing to personally escort them out.

    His call ehoed Resolution 2249 of 20 November 2015, which states “.. putting an end to the acts of terrorism committed in particular by the EIIL, also known as Daesh, as well as by the al-Nusra Front and all other individuals, groups, businesses and entities associated with Al-Qaida”.

    Before the failed vote, the Russian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Sergey Lavrov, informed his French counterpart, Jean-Marc Ayrault, of several amendments that he had wished to see included in the project for a resolution, but they had entailed admitting that there were no moderate rebels in Syria.

    President Putin is to visit France on 19 October.

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