News / Middle East

Russia to Halt Arms Shipments to Syria

Carla Babb
A senior Russian defense official said Moscow will no longer sell any weapons to Syria until the situation there calms down, as a Syrian activist group said the death toll from the Syrian conflict has surpassed 17,000.

Vyacheslav Dzirkaln, the deputy chief of the Russian military and technical cooperation agency, said Monday that Russia will not sign any more arms deals, deliver any more weapons or ship any spare parts for weapons delivered earlier.

The United States and other world leaders have pushed Russia to stop helping Damascus crackdown on the opposition there.

In Moscow, President Vladimir Putin said the Syrian government and the opposition groups should be forced to enter negotiations.  

"I am convinced that we must do everything possible to force the conflicting sides to find a peaceful political solution to all the disputed issues," Putin told a group of Russian and foreign diplomats in televised remarks.

His comments came hours after his foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, met with a senior Syrian opposition leader, Michel Kilo, in Moscow.

Heavy toll of conflict

Russia's announcement that it will no longer send weapons to Syria comes as the head of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says more than 17,000 people have died in the Syrian conflict since it began in March of last year.

Rami Abdelrahman said Monday that 31 died across Syria, including 11 Syrian army troops and 20 civilians and rebels.

He said there was heavy fighting and army shelling in the provinces of Homs, Idlib, Daraa and Deir Ezzor, and near Damascus.

"There is fighting everyday. It doesn't ever stop," Abdelrahman said.  

Annan-Assad meeting

Meanwhile, the U.N.'s special envoy for Syria, Kofi Annan, met with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad Monday before traveling to Iran. The U.N. diplomat called the talks "constructive and candid."

"We discussed the need to end the violence and ways and means of doing so," Annan told reporters. "We agreed on an approach which I will share with the armed opposition."

Annan has been trying for months to implement a peace plan in Syria, but has admitted that the efforts have failed.

In an interview with German television broadcast Sunday, Syrian President Assad accused the United States, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar of hindering peace and supporting what he called "terrorists."

The United Nations wants independent investigators to probe Assad's charges that terrorists, and not the government, are responsible for the violence.

You May Like

Lesotho Faces New Round of Violence, Political Crisis

Brutal killing of military officer has sent former leaders back into S. Africa where they're watching anxiously as regional officials head in to try to restore peace More

Video US Diplomat Expects Adoption of Bosnian Massacre Anniversary Resolution

Samantha Power says there's broad consensus about killings in Bosnia's war, but Russia calls resolution 'divisive,' backs UN countermeasure More

UN Report Exposes Widespread Boko Haram Atrocities

Damning report graphically details pattern of vicious, widespread atrocities committed by Islamist militants More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: rgw1946 from: usa
July 16, 2012 2:24 PM
pull out of every where..NO aid..NO nothing..but--like China and Russia..we will sell some fire crackers

by: Plain Mirror from: Nigeria/Cote d'ivoire
July 10, 2012 4:16 AM
I think UN should by now stop all these non-sense of accusing legitimate governments over crimes which were ignited and perpetrated by rebels. The world is no longer blind for heaven sake. The real meaning of UN is now obviously known; a group of political powered gang stars forcefully and systematically putting their loyalists in power. Enough, I belive should be enough.

by: EwholesaleCaps from: 120 E 5TH STREET, LOS ANG
July 10, 2012 3:20 AM
Welcome To China Wholesale Place. EwholesaleCaps.com provide a variety of goods for you, including: hats, belt,t-shirts, sunglasses, wallets, dresses, bikini, Sexy Lingerie, tie and so on, more surprises waiting for you. The lowest price, the best goods, ewholesalecaps.com everything a surprise for you over and over again. The relentless pursuit of perfection.

by: Anonymous
July 09, 2012 9:56 PM
Thanks Russia, I am not even from Syria... Better late than never.

by: bruceben9 from: usa
July 09, 2012 5:10 PM
no arms until the situation calms down. that is quite a subjective statement. like the egyptian pres saying he will respect all egyptians rights. the rights he believes they have. same thing.

by: Philip James Kalavritinos from: D.C.
July 09, 2012 3:40 PM
Fools, is not the word, as The Former Soviet Union, should in all means support Syria, with heavy weapons, to draw away from The Former Soviet Union, The Turkish People!!! Why submit to Israeli, forums, of long term profits by war, which have used this Turkish Syrian Conflist, to draw Syrians away from Israel? Send Syria The Best Weapons Available, and Rejoice, in Your: Lords; Presidents; DUMA; Dominant Males!!!

by: kmort2 from: US
July 09, 2012 3:38 PM
Russia and China have been seen supporting non elected leaders like themselves. They fear freedom for all. They were not elected either. Time to fear the 21st century as people crawl out of caves, get educated and see a better world for themselves as FREE people.
What a barbaric world we still live in.
In Response

by: Anonymous
July 10, 2012 12:05 PM
Totally agreed, in the end it always ends up becoming freed to the people. It's unfortunate entire countries become destroyed getting there. Sensible leaders regardless of dictators being non elected should show heart for their country, and do what is best for their countries future, not their own best interest. Had Assad walked away at the beginning he would have gone out with more respect. Now trying to hold on to something he doesn't have, and because of the war, he is going to end up leaving power unliked or possibly killed from war. Assad should do what is best for the country and people, go into Asylum in Russia or whereever. He shouldn't let his historic country get flushed down the tubes, do what is best for the people, stop while there is still hope left the country will survive. This is a bloodstain on Syrian Culture, and Syrian People, at the hands of their very own leader.

by: Godwin from: Nigeria
July 09, 2012 3:04 PM
Syria has become a replay of the cold-war game. Russian knows its stand with the US and may not make much noise after its bloc was badly depleted the last time. China thinks it can take over leadership of the bloc and may very likely find out it's on collision course with Russia - not in its favor - it should take early warning. Iran attaches itself to Russia but does not understand how the power game is played. Soon to find itself alone in the cold. Russia's suggestion to force all parties to the conflict to negotiate is the only useful contribution it has made. That suggestion would have been good for the Israel-Palestine conflict to get the Arabs to negotiate since Israel has been ever ready for it.

by: joe from: new york
July 09, 2012 2:55 PM
now only if they could halt American and Saudi arms shipments to the rebels...
In Response

by: Anonymous
July 10, 2012 9:51 PM
Why would you want that? Rebels are protecting innocent men women and children, oh and seniors as well. Unless you yourself back a regime that has branded itself with torture abuse, and indiscriminent killing...

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountaini
X
July 02, 2015 4:10 AM
Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs