July 19, 2012

Russia and China vetoed a U.N. Security Council resolution on Thursday that threatened Syrian authorities with sanctions if they did not halt violence against an uprising, thwarting Western hopes for tough action as the crisis in Syria escalates.

It was the third time that Russia, a key ally of the Syrian government, and China have used their veto power to block U.N. Security Council resolutions designed to put pressure on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and halt the violence in a 16-month conflict that has killed thousands of people. >>>READ FULL ARTICLE

Syrian opposition group warns: If the UN won’t act, ‘we have other options’

Howard LaFranchi
Christian Science Monitor
July 19, 2012

With world powers playing a bit of brinksmanship over international action on Syria, Syria’s largest opposition coalition is presenting an ultimatum of its own: Either the UN Security Council passes a resolution with real consequences targeting President Bashar al-Assad and his regime’s violence, or the opposition will turn elsewhere for the means to defend itself and the Syrian people.

The implication of the opposition’s message is that the Security Council’s failure to finally act on a crisis that has left it paralyzed for over a year will lead to the full-blown civil war and wider regional conflict that world powers say they dread.

“What we are saying here is that if there is no possibility of counting on what is the legitimate mandate of the United Nations Security Council, then we have other options,” says Bassma Kodmani, head of foreign relations for the Syrian National Council (SNC) executive office. “If the door is closed in the face of the Syrian people, then we need to explore other scenarios.”

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