Russia, China snub UN council talks on Syria -enovys

Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:17pm GMT

* UN council talks on condemnation of Syria deadlocked

* Russia, China hint at possible veto of Syria draft

By Louis Charbonneau

UNITED NATIONS, June 11 (Reuters) - Russia and China snubbed U.N. Security Council talks on Saturday convened to discuss a draft resolution that would condemn Syria's bloody crackdown on pro-democracy protesters, U.N. diplomats said.

"Russia and China didn't think it necessary to show up," a council diplomat told Reuters on condition of anonymity. "It's a pretty clear message," another diplomat said.

The European drafters of the resolution convened Saturday's talks in the hope they could break their deadlock on a draft resolution that would not impose sanctions on Syria but would condemn it for the crackdown and suggest Syrian security forces might be guilty of crimes against humanity.

Diplomats said the latest meeting produced no changes among the 13 Security Council members that attended. Currently, nine members, including the draft's sponsors, Britain, France, Germany and Portugal, plan to vote for it. [ID:nN09230836]

The United States is not sponsoring the resolution but has made clear it supports the text and condemns the violence against the demonstrators. It accused accused the Syrian government on Saturday of of creating a "humanitarian crisis" and called on it to halt its offensive. [ID:nLDE75920F] .

Russia and China dislike the idea of any council discussion of Syria and have suggested they might use their veto power to kill the resolution. Lebanon, India, Brazil and South Africa have also said they have problems with the text.   Continued...

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