Thursday, February 22, 2018

Militants disrupt talks on settlement in Eastern Ghouta, says Russia UN ambassador

UN Security Council
Militants controlling Eastern Ghouta have wrecked talks on the settlement in this besieged district, Russia’s UN Ambassador Vasily Nebenzya told a session of the UN Security Council on Thursday.

He said "several thousand irreconcilable militants, including those linked with terrorist organizations remain" in Eastern Ghouta (Damascus suburb). The Russian ambassador stressed that armed units have "turned the people staying in Eastern Ghouta into hostages" and don’t let civilians "leave the territories they control via the check point in al-Wafideen".

"The Russian Center for Reconciliation of the Warring Parties urged illegal groups to lay down arms and formalize their status, but they wrecked the talks yesterday, on February 21," Nebenzya said.
 The draft resolution of the UN Security Council on a ceasefire in Syria has not been coordinated as of yet, and Russia has drawn up amendments that will help make the document "reasonable and feasible," he went on.

"The draft resolution that was officially prepared for the voting, although the authors know perfectly well that there is no consensus, suggests a simple on the surface solution - introduce a ceasefire throughout Syria for a period of no less than 30 days," he said.

  • The ambassador said Russia is interested to know "what will be the guarantees to ensure the observance of this ceasefire". "But we have got no reasonable answer," he added.

"In order to have a reasonable and feasible resolution, the Russian delegation has drawn up amendments to it, which we will now circulate among the members of the Security Council," Nebenzya said.

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