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Al-Jaafari: Draft resolution proposed by Liechtenstein and Qatar is illegitimate and undermines solution prospects

Wednesday, 21 December 2016
H.E. Bashar Ja’afari
General Assembly

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Syria’s Permanent Representative to the UN Bashar al-Jaafari said the draft resolution proposed by Liechtenstein and Qatar that calls for “laying out a mechanism for accountability for war crimes in Syria” proves the hypocrisy and the huge gap between policy and practice with regard to respecting the UN Charter and the sovereignty of the member states, and undermines the opportunities of any political solution in Syria.

In a statement delivered at a UN General Assembly session on Wednesday during discussions of the item titled “prevention of armed conflict”, al-Jaafari described this move by Liechtenstein as “illegitimate” and “dishonest”, adding that it outrageously violates Paragraph 7 of Article 2 of the UN Charter.

He reviewed some of the notes which undermines this draft resolution and discloses the intentions of those who proposed it, mentioning mainly that it is not in the power of the General Assembly to propose any recommendation about a conflict discussion undertaken by the Security Council unless it is requested to.

Al-Jaafari added that establishing such a mechanism, if to be ever done by the General Assembly, entails a mandate by the UN Secretary General after taking permission from the state concerned exclusively, affirming that establishing such a mechanism is a blatant interference in the internal affairs of a UN member state.

He continued as saying that establishing that mechanism at this very critical stage of the crisis in Syria would also undermine the national reconciliation measures adopted by the Syrian government and would directly jeopardize the prospects of the political solution in Syria which all the relevant resolutions of the Security Council stressed that it must be led by the Syrians themselves.

Al-Jaafari indicated that the draft resolution reflects the agendas of some countries which seek to politicize that mechanism and to make it a tool for practicing a political revenge through prolonging the crisis in Syria.

He added that the draft resolution uses a language and terms that are still a source of deep dispute at the UN as those who proposed it seek to implicate the UN member states in dangerous legal precedents.

Al-Jaafari clarified that those who proposed the draft resolution completely ignored any talk or mention of terrorism or the practices of the terrorist organizations in Syria.

He made it clear that those who deserve accountability are the countries which have created the terrorist groups and have been supporting and backing them.

He said that adopting such an initiative by the delegation of Liechtenstein along with countries that support terrorism and shell the civilians in Yemen and behead their citizens in public streets in the name of religion and law, just like what ISIS is doing in Syria and Iraq, reflect the hypocrisy of the delegation which accepted to be a part of this initiative.

Syria’s representative called upon the member states which believe in the principles of the Charter to veto the proposed draft resolution, indicating that vetoing it doesn’t only serve the national interest of Syria, whose people are still suffering from terrorism, but would also be a victory of the credibility of what remains of the international legitimacy and contribute protecting all countries from some states’ attempt to exploit the UN resolutions to target their national sovereignty and legitimate and legal institutions.

He added that a large number of delegations, including the Syrian delegation, have raised a group of clear procedural points which don’t need to be a subject of consultation with the so-called legal advisors during the session, referring to Article 12 of the Charter and other points which prevent the General Assembly from reviewing a matter that is already in the hand of the Security Council.

For his part, Representative of the Russian Federation to the UN said that the adoption of the draft resolution in its current form would exceed the Assembly’s mandate and would constitute direct interference in the internal affairs of member states.

China’s representative to the UN, in turn, stressed the importance of playing constructive role in finding a solution to the crisis in Syria and not complicating it.

He affirmed his country’s intention to work along with all the parties to get back on the track of dialogue as soon as possible.

Venezuela’s Representative to the UN said the current resolution was biased and politically motivated, stressing that Venezuela would vote against it.