European nations are calling for a vote Tuesday on a U.N. resolution that would consider sanctions if the Syrian government doesn’t immediately halt its military crackdown against civilians.Wow! What strong language, showing "determination" to consider perhaps making a recommendation of doing unspecified "measures" in thirty days after further study and committees and meetings meant to determine if Syria has changed!
Diplomats said it was unclear whether Russia, which opposes even mentioning the possibility of sanctions against President Bashar Assad’s regime, will veto or abstain on the resolution, according to The Associated Press.
Early last week, the Europeans presented a new draft resolution that dropped the immediate imposition of sanctions.
Instead, it expressed “determination” to review within 30 days Syria’s compliance with the resolution’s demands.
They include immediately ending all violence, allowing fundamental rights and freedoms including free expression and peaceful assembly, lifting all media restrictions and allowing unhindered access for human rights investigators.
If Syria had not complied, the draft expressed the council’s determination “to consider the adoption of targeted measures, including sanctions.”
After the Russians rejected it, the Europeans came back with a new text on Thursday that watered down the sanctions language further.
The current draft, which is expected to be put to a vote, drops the words “including sanctions,” but leaves in “targeted measures” - which can include sanctions.
The arms embargo in the original draft is gone. Instead, the latest draft calls on all states "to exercise vigilance and restraint over the direct or indirect supply, sale or transfer to Syria of arms and related materiel."
It expresses deep concern at the deteriorating situation in Syria and the potential for a further escalation of violence and reaffirms the need to resolve the crisis peacefully, calling for “an inclusive Syrian-led political process conducted in an environment free from violence, fear, intimidation, and extremism.” It adds in backing for the Arab League's effort to end the violence and promote a political dialogue.
Assad must be trembling in fear.