U.N. envoy, Russia say striking Syria would hurt chance for peace

ST PETERSBURG, Russia Fri Sep 6, 2013 9:15am EDT

Arab League-United Nations envoy Lakhdar Brahimi gestures during a news conference on the situation in Syria at the United Nations European headquarters in Geneva August 28, 2013. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse

Arab League-United Nations envoy Lakhdar Brahimi gestures during a news conference on the situation in Syria at the United Nations European headquarters in Geneva August 28, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Denis Balibouse

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ST PETERSBURG, Russia (Reuters) - Russia and the international peace envoy for Syria warned on Friday that U.S. military action against Syria would be illegal without U.N. Security Council approval and would undermine the chances for a political solution to the conflict.

Remarks by U.N.-Arab League envoy Lakhdar Brahimi and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, after a meeting with ministers from several other G20 states, added to pressure on President Barack Obama to refrain from ordering strikes.

"International law says that no country is allowed to take the law into their hands - they have to go through the Security Council," Brahimi told reporters in a joint appearance with Lavrov after the talks on the sidelines of a G20 summit.

Lavrov said that "a clear understanding is taking shape among many responsible states that the use of force, bypassing the Security Council, would essentially put an end to efforts to reach a political settlement and convene an international conference."

Russia and the United States announced in May that they would try to bring the Syrian government and opposition together at a peace conference known as Geneva 2, but Brahimi also said military action would hurt the chances of it ever happening.

"Geneva 2 now is in danger because of the events of August 21 and what may follow," Brahimi said of an alleged chemical weapons attack, which the United States blames on government forces, and the possibility of punitive military strikes.

(Writing by Steve Gutterman, Editing by Timothy Heritage and Mike Collett-White)

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Comments (3)
wags wrote:
Funny how Russia had no problem invading the sovereign nation of Georgia in 2008 without UN Security Council approval. Apparently rule of law does not apply to them.

Sep 06, 2013 10:34am EDT  --  Report as abuse
PaulBradley wrote:
Most of the commentators on Reuters are glorifying Mr. Putin – former KGB-trained officer, in counter-intelligence, disinformation, political propaganda among plethora of subversive activities – and writing in support of Mr. Putin’s rhetoric about the respect to “International Law” and the need to rely on U.N. Security Council to solve ‘Syria problem’.

The following summary is just an example and should help us to realize Putin’s and his former KGB pals’ propaganda aim to convince everybody that they are the only ‘Saints’ in this world.

In Christmas 1979, Russian paratroopers landed in Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan. The country was already in the grip of a civil war.

On December 27th, 1979, prime minister Hazifullah AminAmin was shot by the Russians and he was replaced by Babrak Kamal. His position as head of the Afghan government depended entirely on the fact that he needed Russian military support to keep him in power.

The United Nations had condemned the invasion as early as January 1980 but a Security Council motion calling for the withdrawal of Russian forces had been vetoed……by Russia.

So, in reference to Syria – What is the U.N. Security Council good for when its members are only interested in pursuing their individual political agendas instead of forging resolutions to promote just handling of Global problems?

Sep 06, 2013 2:17pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
PaulBradley wrote:
P.S. What has the U.N. and/or its ‘Security Council’ done in respect to Russian invasion of Hungary during the uprising of 1956, Russian-led ‘Warsaw Pact’ invasion of Czechoslovakia during August 1968, Russian invasion of Georgia in 2008, etc. ???? – Absolutely NOTHING!

Sep 06, 2013 3:07pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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