News / Middle East

International Community Urges Political Transition in Syria

Two electronic boards show the results of a vote about supporting the opposition forces in Syria, in the United Nations General Assembly in New York, May 15, 2013.
Two electronic boards show the results of a vote about supporting the opposition forces in Syria, in the United Nations General Assembly in New York, May 15, 2013.
Margaret Besheer
In a vote Wednesday at the U.N. General Assembly, support for Syria’s opposition was weaker than previously, with a symbolic resolution garnering less outright support and nearly double the abstentions than a similar vote nine months ago.

Reacting to the continued paralysis in the 15-nation U.N. Security Council, Qatar and several other countries decided several weeks ago to push for a resolution in the U.N. General Assembly on the situation in Syria, which continues to deteriorate.

In the meantime, the United States and Russia put forward an initiative aimed at getting representatives of both the Syrian government and opposition to the negotiating table next month.

Despite the objections of Russia, Syria and several other countries that General Assembly action now would be counter-productive, the draft resolution was approved Wednesday with a vote of 107 in favor, 12 against and 59 abstentions.

The non-binding resolution welcomes the establishment of the opposition Syrian National Coalition as “effective representative interlocutors needed for a political transition.” It also calls for an inclusive Syrian-led political transition through dialogue with representatives from both the government and opposition.

The United States, one of nearly 60 co-sponsors of the resolution, disagreed that it would hurt efforts to bring the Syrian sides together. Deputy U.S. Ambassador Rosemary DiCarlo spoke in the General Assembly before the vote.

“In our view, the resolution before you is consistent with this latest initiative. Adopting this resolution will send a clear message that the political solution we all seek is the best way to end the suffering of the people of Syria,” said DiCarlo.

Most of the “no” votes were expected - Russia, China, Iran, North Korea and Venezuela were among them. But nearly twice as many countries abstained compared to last August, when the General Assembly overwhelmingly adopted another resolution on Syria. This time, 26 fewer countries supported the measure with a "yes" vote. Some diplomats suggested this reflected growing concerns about Syria's divided opposition and extremist elements among it.

More than 70,000 people have been killed in the more than two years of Syria's conflict, while nearly 6 million more either have been displaced or have fled to neighboring countries, causing a severe humanitarian crisis in the region.

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by: Lapazjim from: United States
May 15, 2013 7:16 PM
It is understandable that some of you believe that the U.S. and other countries are involved in trying to get rid of Assad because of the propaganda fed to you which is basically BS.Your main contributor to the continuation of this problem is Russia and their supplying Assad with military weapon support.
Russia and China should realize that they need to take care of issues nearer to their countries.They need to stop going against the UN security council on a consistent basis.China especially needs to realize that their current problem with the "boy child"in North Korea needs their attention more.If the little boy throws a temper tantrum and launches a missile in the wrong direction is China still going to be his ally?Very doubtful as their loss will be significant in world trade and they are not willing o loose that. China's new found status and monies will keep them from it.
The problem has always been that the countries that back UN resolutions do not want to do what it takes to enforce them.They have no guts and are all talk.To achieve this the U.S. has been the one that leads and the others follow.China and Russia need to realize that to e a power in this world and attempt to maintain peace they must make the sacrifice of becoming the bad guys to the world as the U.S. has.If China wants to e this dominating force and take over for the U.S. in these situations then let them be he ones to man up and take over.
Without unilateral decisions made by the U.S.,China and Russia to maintain peace and stability in the world then there will be no hope for the world.This worlds ultimate destruction due its ineffectiveness to maintain peace for all will result in the end for all of the people and even this planet!!!


by: Monir Hafez from: Egypt
May 15, 2013 3:35 PM
UN should pass a resolution to outlaw US/Israel, France and Britain and Germany as warmongers and child killers of Muslims around the world


by: Le Ruscino from: Monaco
May 15, 2013 7:18 AM
With the Rebels using Sarin gas as officially confirmed by the UN and now eating the raw heart of Syrian soldier! America, UK & France have got it all a*se backwards!

Russia been proved to have right from day one beside since the regime change in Libya arranged by the UN which has been an incredible disaster & created by a manipulation of lies - How can the UN right this wrong to be credible again?

The US must 'shut um mouth' until Gitmo is closed a freedom of speech is returned to the good American people.


by: Sam from: Accra
May 15, 2013 6:43 AM
What at all does Qatar hope to gain from the destruction of Syria. They seem to be the cause of all Syria's troubles including the arming of rebels to overthrow the regime.
The tables will soon turn.


by: zainmunshi from: Indian kashmir
May 15, 2013 5:59 AM
why this discrimination?,why not a parallel resolution condemning the role of US,France,Britain and Germany for forcible regime change in Syria,and for this purpose sending mercenaries to Syria and then actively aiding and abetting these terrorists who perpetrate mayhem in Syria.

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