Assad's friends at the UN ride to his rescue

Russia and China - two nations that sell arms to Syria and have extensive commercial ties - have vetoed a rather mild UN resolution that threatened sanctions and an arms embargo if President Assad didn't stop targeting civilians. Predictability, the reasons given by both nations were - shall we say - unique: Russia's UN envoy, Vitaly Churkin, said the European resolution was "based on a philosophy of confrontation." The threat of action was "unacceptable," he added. Many opponents raised the air strikes in Libya and fears that it could be renewed in Syria to justify their votes. China said it exercised its veto because the resolution would have "blindly" pressured the Arab nation and not helped. "Some countries submitted a draft resolution to blindly impose pressure and even threatened sanctions against Syria. This would not help to ease the situation," Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu said in a statement. US ambassador Susan Rice called the comments a "cheap ruse by...(Read Full Post)

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