Assad must transfer power and depart Syria. The regime-sponsored violence that we witnessed again in Hama yesterday is simply unconscionable. Assad has doubled down on his brutality and his duplicity and Syria will not, cannot be peaceful, stable or certainly democratic until Assad goes.U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton • Saying, in no uncertain terms, that she wants Bashar al-Assad out of Syria. She emphasized that the U.S. is willing to work with the UN Security Council to reach this goal. Clinton’s latest statement comes on the heels of a massacre near Hama on Wednesday that led to the deaths of at least 78 villagers (according to UN observers), including up to 40 women and children.
Every member of the Council has to make a decision: Whose side are you on? Are you on the side of the Syrian people? Are you on the side of the Arab League? Are you on the side of the people of the Middle East and North Africa who have during this past year spoken out courageously and often for their rights? Or are you on the side of a brutal, dictatorial regime?U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton • Stating her case to the UN Security Council, on the matter of the violent turmoil that continues in Syria. Clinton is clearly arguing on somewhat simplistic moral grounds, trying to put more pressure on Russia, which has said they’ll veto a resolution if it mandates that Bashar al-Assad step down from power. In particular, memory of the NATO mission in Libya is likely in play — Russia approved a resolution to protect Libyan civilians, only to see it broaden into a mission to depose dictator Muammar Gaddafi, which they opposed. Consequently, they’re now unwilling to agree to a resolution that carries either the overt or implied goal of regime change. source (via • follow)
UN action on Syria blocked by Russia, China: It was just over a month ago that Syria claimed to accept a deal with the Arab League to halt attacks and killings of citizens (and allow free media observers into the country), before flaunting their violation of the deal the next day by killing eleven people. They’ve since talked about another deal with the League, similar to the terms of the last one, but it’s rather impossible to take that seriously at this point. Many UN states would like to recommend Syria to the International Criminal Court in the Hague for crimes against humanity, but Security Council members China and Russia refuse to issue any condemnation of the Assad government — Russia, further, has referred to western criticism of their defense of Syria as “immoral.” source
This marks a really important milestone in the transition in Libya. It marks the way from the military phase towards the formation of an inclusive government, the full participation of all sectors of society, and for the Libyan people to choose their own future.British ambassador to the UN, Mark Lyall Grant • Speaking on the UN Security Council unanimously voting to end the no-fly zone that they had previously approved in Libyan skies. The no-fly zone will be lifted on October 31st, marking the official drawing down of NATO’s military involvement in the country. The Security Council also implored the new Libyan government “to refrain from reprisals” against foreign nationals and African immigrants who were targeted by the rebels as being supporters of former dictator Muammar Gaddafi. source (via • follow)