November 05, 2012

Russian minister: No need for U.N. resolution to end violence in Syria

Russia insisted a political solution was the only answer to end the bloodshed in Syria, where the death toll mounted on Monday.
Here are the latest developments in the Syrian civil war:

Russian diplomat: 'No need for any type of resolution'

Russia's top diplomat dismissed a call by the U.N.-Arab League special envoy for the Security Council to adopt a resolution calling for a transition of power in Syria.

"If the priority is the change of (the government,) then there will be more blood. But if the priority is to save lives, then there is no need for any type of resolution," Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Sunday after a meeting with the special envoy in Cairo.

Lavrov's comments followed news that the special envoy, Lakhdar Brahimi, called on the U.N. Security Council to adopt a resolution calling for a transition of power in Syria that permanent Security Council members agreed upon in June. The resolution, known as the Geneva deal, was put together by his predecessor, Kofi Annan, and called for a transitional government in Syria.

Brahimi's call for the resolution came after a holiday cease-fire he pushed for between government forces and rebels collapsed.

The Geneva agreement did not lay out how power would be transferred, nor did it spell out any role for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, who has been under enormous international pressure to step down and end the conflict that began in March 2011.

China and Russia, members of the U.N. Security Council, have repeatedly blocked attempts to adopt a resolution.
Many have accused Russia of backing the Syrian government, but Russia says it just wants a political solution for Syria determined by its own people.
China, meanwhile, has offered a four-point plan to end the war, calling for a cease-fire, plans for political settlement and transition, and international humanitarian aid.

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