Russia, China veto U.N. resolution on Syria

Russia, China veto U.N. resolution on Syria

Jason DeCrow/AP – Portuguese representative Jose Filipe Moraes Cabral, left, and South African representative Baso Sangqu, right, glance at Russian representative Vitaly Churkin, center, as they vote in support of a draft resolution backing an Arab League call for Syrian President Bashar Assad to step down.

UNITED NATIONS — Russia and China on Saturday vetoed a U.N. resolution condemning Syria’s violent repression of anti-government demonstrators, effectively quashing efforts to isolate President Bashar al-Assad’s government as it intensifies a nearly year-long crackdown.

The veto dealt a blow to attempts by the United States and its European partners to rally behind an Arab League plan that would require Assad to yield power and make way for a democratically elected unity government. The vote followed weeks of negotiations in which diplomats had significantly watered down the resolution in a bid to win broad support.

In an emergency session, the U.N. Security Council failed to approve a resolution calling for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step aside, following the deadliest one-day crackdown in Syria’s 11-month uprising. (Feb. 5)

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“The United States is disgusted” by the Russian and Chinese vetoes, Susan E. Rice, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, said after the vote. “A couple of members of this council remain steadfast in their willingness to sell out the Syrian people and shield a craven tyrant.”

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