UN / SYRIA

19-Jul-2012 00:03:06
Despite the appeals for united and concerted action to help end the escalating violence in Syria, the Security Council today (19 July) failed to adopt a resolution that would have threatened sanctions on Damascus. Russia and China vetoed the resolution.UNTV
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STORY: UN / SYRIA
TRT: 3.06
SOURCE: UNTV
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / CHINESE / ARABIC / NATS

DATELINE: 19 JULY 2012, NEW YORK CITY / FILE
SHOTLIST
FILE – RECENT, NEW YORK CITY

1. Wide shot, exterior United Nations headquarters

19 JULY 2012, NEW YORK CITY

2. Various shot, Security Council vote
3. Med shot, delegates
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Mark Lyall Grant, Permanent Representative of the United Kingdom to the United Nations:
“The United Kingdom is appalled by the decision of Russia and China to veto this draft resolution aimed to bringing an end to the bloodshed in Syria and to create the conditions for meaningful political progress. It is the third time that Russia and China have blocked efforts by this Council to address the Council in Syria. More than 14,000 innocent Syrians have been killed since China and Russia first vetoed our efforts to stem the violence in October last year.”
5. Med shot, delegates
6. SOUNDBITE (English) Susan Rice, Permanent Representative of the United States to the United Nations:
“Despite paranoid if not disingenuous claims by some to the contrary, it would in no way authorize nor even pave the way for foreign military intervention. What this resolution would have done was to provide the political support to the UN Mission that might have given it a fighting chance to accomplish its mandate. It is a shame this Council was unwilling to do so.”
7. Med shot, Russian Ambassador
8. SOUNDBITE (China) Li Baodong, Permanent Representative of China to the United Nations:
“The draft resolution is seriously problematic, with uneven content that’s intended to put pressure on only one party. Experience has proven that such position will not resolve the Syrian issue, but instead would only derail the issue from the track of political settlement. It would not only aggravate the turmoil but also result in a spill over of the problem throughout the region.”
9. Med shot, delegates
10. SOUNDBITE (Arabic) Bashar Ja'afari, Permanent Representative of Syria to the United Nations:
“If such a terrorist act cannot incur the immediate strong condemnation from the Security Council, this may mean that all that the international community has built on consensus on combating terrorism was but mere talk.”
11. Wide shot, Security Council
12. Wide shot, Ambassador Churkin of Russia walks to the stakeout position

FILE – RECENT, NEW YORK CITY

13. Med shot, cameras

19 JULY 2012, NEW YORK CITY

14. SOUNDBITE (Russian) Vitaly Churkin, Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the United Nations:
“I have trouble with those statements where I hear about inaction. Would a Tomahawk strike at the presidential palace in Damascus constitute, satisfy you in terms of action? I think we have done a lot of action. We have displayed incredible amount of diplomatic activity over the past months in order to try to prevent the deterioration of the situation.”

FILE – RECENT, NEW YORK CITY

15. Close up, reporter’s notepads

19 JULY 2012, NEW YORK CITY

16. Zoom out, Churkin walks away from the stakeout position
STORYLINE
Despite the appeals for united and concerted action to help end the escalating violence in Syria, the Security Council today (19 July) failed to adopt a resolution that would have threatened sanctions on Damascus. Russia and China vetoed the resolution.

Eleven of the Council’s 15 members voted in favour of the resolution’s text, while two others – Pakistan and South Africa – abstained. A veto by any one of the Council’s five permanent members means a resolution cannot be adopted.

Ambassador Mark Lyall Grant of the United Kingdom said he was “appalled by the decision of Russia and China” to veto the draft resolution, which he said was “aimed to bringing an end to the bloodshed in Syria and to create the conditions for meaningful political progress.”

US Ambassador Susan Rice also condemned the negative vote by Russia and China and said that “despite paranoid if not disingenuous claims by some to the contrary, it would in no way authorize nor even pave the way for foreign military intervention.”

She said the resolution would have provided political support to the UN Mission and “might have given it a fighting chance to accomplish its mandate.”

Ambassador Li Baodong of China said the draft resolution they voted against was “seriously problematic, with uneven content that’s intended to put pressure on only one party.”

He said such an approach “would only derail the issue from the track of political settlement” and “would not only aggravate the turmoil but also result in a spill over of the problem throughout the region.”

For his part, Syrian Ambassador Bashar Ja'afari criticized the Council’s failure to condemn the recent bomb attack at the National Security Headquarters in Damascus, which killed and wounded several Syrian Government officials, including Syria’s defence minister and his deputy.

Ja'afari said “if such a terrorist act cannot incur the immediate strong condemnation from the Security Council, this may mean that all that the international community has built on consensus on combating terrorism was but mere talk.”

Outside the Council, Ambassador Vitaly Churkin of the Russian Federation rejected claims of inaction on Syria.

He asked whether “a Tomahawk strike at the presidential palace in Damascus” would satisfy such claims.

He said Russia has displayed “incredible amount of diplomatic activity over the past months in order to try to prevent the deterioration of the situation.”

Ahead of today’s vote, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, along with the Joint Special Envoy for the United Nations and the League of Arab States for the Syrian Crisis, Kofi Annan, had repeatedly expressed the hope that the Council could reach agreement on a course of collective action to end the bloodshed in the Middle Eastern country.

The UN estimates that more than 10,000 people, mostly civilians, have been killed in Syria and tens of thousands displaced since the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad began some 16 months ago.

The Council also postponed making a decision today on the future of the UN Supervision Mission in Syria (UNSMIS), which recently suspended its regular patrols due to the escalating violence on the ground. Its 90-day mandate expires Friday.
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