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Security Council to Syria: Cooperate or Else!

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2005 1:32 pm    Post subject: Security Council to Syria: Cooperate or Else! Reply with quote

U.N. VS. SYRIA [Kathryn Jean Lopez]


UNITED NATIONS, Oct 31 (Reuters) - The U.N. Security Council adopted a resolution on Monday demanding Syria cooperate with a U.N. probe into the death of former Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri or face possible future actions.

The resolution was adopted 15-0 after principal drafters the United States and France agreed to delete a specific reference to economic sanctions and instead said the council would consider possible unspecified further action if Syria did not comply.
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2005 3:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Remarks Before the United Nations Security Council

Secretary Condoleezza Rice
UN Headquarters
New York City
October 31, 2005

(11:15 a.m. EST)

Thank you, Mr. President.

Mr. President, Mr. Secretary General, fellow members of the Council, by passing
Resolution 1636 this morning, we in the United Nations have declared our
support for the Commission's search for truth, which is being ably led by Mr.
Detlev Mehlis. We have also affirmed our just demands of the Syrian Government
and made it clear that failure to comply with these demands will lead to
serious consequences from the international community.

There is a close link between these two actions. For the past 30 years, Syria's
occupation of Lebanon penetrated all aspects of its society. Beginning last
year, however, Syria's interference became so corrupt and unbearable that it
began to galvanize opposition against itself both within Lebanon and among the
international community. Late last August, the Syrian Government dictated the
extension of Lebanese President Emile Lahoud's term of office. In response, the
international community acted, though some on the Security Council did not want
our actions to single out Syria by name.

Hence, in Resolution 1559, this Council called for the withdrawal of all
foreign forces from Lebanon and summoned all states to respect Lebanese
sovereignty. When the Syrian Government met none of these demands, Lebanese
Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, a respected leader and admired philanthropist,
resigned his post in protest. Now, not four months later, Prime Minister Hariri
was assassinated in a terrorist bombing that claimed the lives of 22 other
people as well. After mourning their murdered leader, one million Lebanese
citizens united in downtown Beirut to publicly call for truth and justice and
freedom from Syrian domination.

Again, the international community acted. We supported the aspirations of the
Lebanese people, and helped them to compel Syria to withdraw its military
forces from the country. The Security Council unanimously passed Resolution
1595, which established the UN International Independent Investigation
Commission to examine the crime and to identify the guilty.

We have now received the Commission's interim report, and its findings are
deeply disturbing. We're told that there is converging evidence pointing at
both Lebanese and Syrian involvement in this terrorist act. And we're told that
it would be difficult envisage a scenario whereby such a complex assassination
plot could have been carried out without the knowledge of senior Syrian
officials. We've also learned that Syrian officials have sought to impede this
investigation by intentionally misleading the Commission, including by
providing false testimony.

Syria has offered no truthful explanations to these serious allegations.
Instead, it has chosen, until now, to dismiss the Commission report as
politically motivated.

The Syrian Government has actively and consistently worked to break the will of
the Lebanese people and to thwart the will of the international community. At
this important time, with this unanimous resolution today, the United Nations
is taking a step to hold Syria accountable for any further failure to cooperate
with the Commission's investigations and to consider further action if

The Chapter 7 resolution that we are passing today is the only way to compel
the Syrian Government to accept the just demands of the United Nations and to
cooperate fully with the Mehlis investigation. With our decision today, we show
that Syria has isolated itself from the international community through its
false statements, its support for terrorism, its interference in the affairs of
its neighbors, and its destabilizing behavior in the Middle East.

Now the Syrian Government needs to make a strategic decision to fundamentally
change its behavior. Until that day comes, however, we in the international
community must remain united and we must remain resolute in our pursuit of
truth, our defense of justice, and our support of liberty for the brave and
courageous Lebanese people.

Thank you very much, Mr. President.


Released on October 31, 2005

See http://www.state.gov/secretary/ for all remarks by the Secretary of State.
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2005 9:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote


Syrian "tirade" touches off brief diplomatic firestorm in Security Council meeting
The Associated Press, Oct. 31, 2005


Syria's foreign minister sparked a brief diplomatic dustup in the U.N. Security Council on Monday when he suggested that the United States, Spain and Britain knew in advance about terrorist attacks in New York, Madrid and London.

Farouk Al-Sharaa made the claim after the Security Council passed a resolution and backed a U.N. report that said the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri could not have occurred without Damascus' approval.

His remarks drew heated denunciations from British Foreign Minister Jack Straw and U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who called al-Sharaa's comments an "unbelievable tirade" and "bizarre."

As diplomatic spats go, the incident wasn't exactly former Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev banging his shoe in the General Assembly hall.

Yet a testy exchange between al-Sharaa and Straw punctured a morning of largely civil speeches once the Security Council passed a resolution demanding Syria cooperate with a probe into the assassination of Lebanon's former prime minister, Rafik Hariri

After 11 foreign ministers and four U.N. ambassadors went around the council table demanding Syria's cooperation with the investigation, Al-Sharaa took the floor in his nation's defense. He rejected the probe's findings that Hariri's Feb. 14 assassination could not have occurred without Syrian involvement.

He argued that such a conclusion would be tantamount to claiming that U.S., Spanish and British authorities knew ahead of time about the terrorist attacks that struck their soil on Sept. 11, 2001, March 11, 2004 and July 7 of this year.

Al-Sharaa then went even further.

"We know that such security organs, particularly the British, were fully aware that such attacks would take place and had prior training to face up to them," al-Sharaa said, jabbing his finger in the air toward Straw, with Rice and the other foreign ministers looking on.

Once al-Sharaa finished, Straw took the floor to respond. Clearly indignant, he repeatedly looked over at al-Sharaa along the council's horseshoe-shaped table as he denounced his remarks.

"I was not going to respond until I heard the foreign minister of Syria make what I can only describe as the most grotesque and insensitive comparison," he said.

If al-Sharaa was suggesting that those three governments knew about the attacks, Straw said, "I think you ought to say so, otherwise your comparison is entirely worthless."

Al-Sharaa then requested the floor yet again and backed down slightly. He stressed that Syria wanted to cooperate with the Hariri probe and that his country had condemned the New York and London attacks many times.

"We sent many messages of condolence and sympathy and expressed our condolences many a time following the underground attacks in July," he said. "I even contacted by telephone, despite all this controversy, to express personally to Jack Straw our condemnation and denunciation and sympathy. If I'm wrong can't he tell me so?"

After the council meeting ended soon after, Rice told reporters that al-Sharaa's "really unbelievable tirade" only reaffirmed that Syria wanted to discredit the U.N.-backed probe into Hariri's killing.

"It was a tirade that made the most bizarre connection of what had happened to Rafik Hariri" with the attacks in New York, Madrid and London, Rice said. She then noted that al-Sharaa himself had been mentioned as not cooperating with the probe.

Last edited by Oppenheimer on Mon Oct 31, 2005 9:42 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2005 9:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Remarks After the United Nations Security Council Session

Secretary Condoleezza Rice
UN Headquarters
New York City
October 31, 2005

(1:20 p.m. EST)

SECRETARY RICE: Good afternoon. I'll make a very brief statement and then take
a couple of questions.

The Security Council has just passed unanimously a very good resolution
concerning the Mehlis report and the importance of continuing that
investigation so that truth and justice can be done for the Lebanese people in
bringing the perpetrators to justice of the intolerable assassination of Prime
Minister Rafik Hariri.

The resolution is a very good resolution that first and foremost compels Syrian
cooperation with the Mehlis Commission, cooperation that to this date has not
been forthcoming. The Mehlis interim report made very clear that the Syrians
have not been cooperating.

Secondly, the resolution tells the Syrians in no uncertain terms -- very strong
language -- that they should not interfere in Lebanese affairs in any way. That
is a warning to Syria about interference in Lebanese affairs.

And third, it allows the Council to come back to consider further action should
that be necessary, should Syria not comply.

We were very pleased that this resolution could be adopted unanimously. It
sends a very strong signal to Syria of its isolation, but of course that signal
was simply reinforced by the really unbelievable tirade of Syria's Foreign
Minister, Mr. al-Shara, which showed that the Syrians were intent on going to
some length to try and discredit the Mehlis investigation after there had been
a vote which clearly welcomed the Mehlis investigation, an independent
investigation. It was a tirade that made the most bizarre connection of what
had happened to Rafik Hariri with somehow the U.S. Government position on 9/11,
the British position at the time of the July 7 bombings, and the Spanish
position at the time of the March 3rd bombings. At one point, Mr. -- Dr. Shara
said that there had been a kind of strange presentation. Well, this was a truly
strange presentation.

And finally, I would just note that Dr. Shara himself has been noted by the
Mehlis Commission of not having cooperated and, in fact, having provided false
statements through his ministry's letter to the Commission. So obviously, there
is work to be done, but this is a very clear signal to the Syrian Government
that their activities are being noted and that they really must now give full
cooperation to the Lebanese Government -- to the Mehlis Commission.

QUESTION: Madame Secretary.


QUESTION: You focused today on the resolution and the Mehlis investigation, but
you've also been talking about Syrian noncompliance with 1559, and you have the
Terje Roed-Larsen report. Is the U.S. prepared to put forth any further
measures to hold Syria accountable for some of the other things that you've
been criticizing it for lately?

SECRETARY RICE: Well, we wanted to concentrate on the Mehlis report because
Mehlis has until December 15th to complete his investigation and we wanted to
make certain that that work could get done and so it made sense to work on the
Mehlis investigation. But I am certain that there will be consideration of
Terje Roed-Larsen's report and the lack of progress that has been noted there
on several aspects of 1559.

I would also note that the Quartet, just a couple of days ago, took a statement
that told the Syrians to take all measures so that their territory could not be
used for terrorist activities and told them to shut down the offices of the
Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

So Syria's destabilizing behavior in the region is being noted in many ways and
I am certain that if it is necessary for the Council to get back together, we
will do so.

QUESTION: You weren't Secretary about three years ago. About three years ago,
the divorce between the French Government and your government in the Security
Council could not have been more complete. Beyond letting justice be done in
Lebanon now, how far do you expect this alliance with the French to go now?

SECRETARY RICE: Well, we and the French have had excellent cooperation on this
matter and many others, including work that we have done together in
Afghanistan. I might note, too, that on this particular matter, which is 1559
and Mehlis, we've had the closest possible cooperation.

We had a disagreement about whether or not it was time to hold Saddam Hussein
accountable for his acts and for his failure to carry out his obligations under
the multiple resolutions that had been passed by the Security Council. But when
I talk to my French colleagues, they recognize the importance of a stable and
democratic Iraq. They want to contribute to that stable and democratic Iraq,
and I am sure we will cooperate on that and many other measures as well.

Last one.

QUESTION: What do you say to Arab public opinion, who see this latest UN report
as yet another attempt by the UN Security Council, notably the U.S., to tighten
the noose on another sovereign Arab country? And do you consider that the
passage of this resolution under Chapter 7 gives the U.S. the authority to use
force unilaterally, as was the case in Iraq?

SECRETARY RICE: What Chapter 7 -- this Chapter 7 resolution is very explicit in
what it means, which is that Syria must cooperate with the Mehlis report and
then, if necessary, the Council can come back and consider other measures or
other action, I think is the way that it's phrased. That is what we take from
this report and that is what we intend to live by.

In terms of your first question, I would just note that what the Mehlis report
is talking about is what potentially -- and I want to emphasize potentially
because this is an interim report -- but potentially the security forces of one
state participated in the assassination of a prime minister of another state.
And I might just note, Lebanon, of course, is a state with a mixed population
but, of course, a part of the Arab world traditionally. So this is not against

I would also note that Syria's activities have been noted in the Quartet's
statement for the difficulty that it is causing for the Palestinian Authority,
as the Palestinians try and build an independent state to live side by side
with Israel.

And of course, it has been noted that there are problems on the Syrian-Iraqi
border that are allowing the ingress of terrorists who are killing Iraqi

So this is not anyone against Arab states. This is holding Syria accountable
for activities that are indeed frustrating the aspirations, not to mention the
safety, of the Lebanese people, the Iraqi people, and the Palestinian people.

Thank you very much.

Released on October 31, 2005

See http://www.state.gov/secretary/ for all remarks by the Secretary of State.
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 03, 2005 10:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

or else what Syria might finally get thrown of the Human Rights Commission which they shouldn't have been on in the first place?
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 03, 2005 12:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Human rights commision is defunct...the Human rights council is in process of being formed as mandated by the 2005 UN Plenary Summit this past Sept.

See http://www.un.org/ for details on this.

As for next steps and "serious concequences"....this is what is being referenced to:




Article 39
The Security Council shall determine the existence of any threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression and shall make recommendations, or decide what measures shall be taken in accordance with Articles 41 and 42, to maintain or restore international peace and security.

Article 40
In order to prevent an aggravation of the situation, the Security Council may, before making the recommendations or deciding upon the measures provided for in Article 39, call upon the parties concerned to comply with such provisional measures as it deems necessary or desirable. Such provisional measures shall be without prejudice to the rights, claims, or position of the parties concerned. The Security Council shall duly take account of failure to comply with such provisional measures.

Article 41
The Security Council may decide what measures not involving the use of armed force are to be employed to give effect to its decisions, and it may call upon the Members of the United Nations to apply such measures. These may include complete or partial interruption of economic relations and of rail, sea, air, postal, telegraphic, radio, and other means of communication, and the severance of diplomatic relations.

Article 42
Should the Security Council consider that measures provided for in Article 41 would be inadequate or have proved to be inadequate, it may take such action by air, sea, or land forces as may be necessary to maintain or restore international peace and security. Such action may include demonstrations, blockade, and other operations by air, sea, or land forces of Members of the United Nations.

Article 43
All Members of the United Nations, in order to contribute to the maintenance of international peace and security, undertake to make available to the Security Council, on its call and in accordance with a special agreement or agreements, armed forces, assistance, and facilities, including rights of passage, necessary for the purpose of maintaining international peace and security.

Such agreement or agreements shall govern the numbers and types of forces, their degree of readiness and general location, and the nature of the facilities and assistance to be provided.

The agreement or agreements shall be negotiated as soon as possible on the initiative of the Security Council. They shall be concluded between the Security Council and Members or between the Security Council and groups of Members and shall be subject to ratification by the signatory states in accordance with their respective constitutional processes.

Article 44
When the Security Council has decided to use force it shall, before calling upon a Member not represented on it to provide armed forces in fulfilment of the obligations assumed under Article 43, invite that Member, if the Member so desires, to participate in the decisions of the Security Council concerning the employment of contingents of that Member's armed forces.

Article 45
In order to enable the United Nations to take urgent military measures, Members shall hold immediately available national air-force contingents for combined international enforcement action. The strength and degree of readiness of these contingents and plans for their combined action shall be determined within the limits laid down in the special agreement or agreements referred to in Article 43, by the Security Council with the assistance of the Military Staff Committee.

Article 46
Plans for the application of armed force shall be made by the Security Council with the assistance of the Military Staff Committee.

Article 47
There shall be established a Military Staff Committee to advise and assist the Security Council on all questions relating to the Security Council's military requirements for the maintenance of international peace and security, the employment and command of forces placed at its disposal, the regulation of armaments, and possible disarmament.

The Military Staff Committee shall consist of the Chiefs of Staff of the permanent members of the Security Council or their representatives. Any Member of the United Nations not permanently represented on the Committee shall be invited by the Committee to be associated with it when the efficient discharge of the Committee's responsibilities requires the participation of that Member in its work.

The Military Staff Committee shall be responsible under the Security Council for the strategic direction of any armed forces placed at the disposal of the Security Council. Questions relating to the command of such forces shall be worked out subsequently.

The Military Staff Committee, with the authorization of the Security Council and after consultation with appropriate regional agencies, may establish regional sub-committees.

Article 48
The action required to carry out the decisions of the Security Council for the maintenance of international peace and security shall be taken by all the Members of the United Nations or by some of them, as the Security Council may determine.

Such decisions shall be carried out by the Members of the United Nations directly and through their action in the appropriate international agencies of which they are members.

Article 49
The Members of the United Nations shall join in affording mutual assistance in carrying out the measures decided upon by the Security Council.

Article 50
If preventive or enforcement measures against any state are taken by the Security Council, any other state, whether a Member of the United Nations or not, which finds itself confronted with special economic problems arising from the carrying out of those measures shall have the right to consult the Security Council with regard to a solution of those problems.

Article 51
Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective self-defence if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken measures necessary to maintain international peace and security. Measures taken by Members in the exercise of this right of self-defence shall be immediately reported to the Security Council and shall not in any way affect the authority and responsibility of the Security Council under the present Charter to take at any time such action as it deems necessary in order to maintain or restore international peace and security.
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2005 12:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote


Iran backs under-fire Syria Sun. 6 Nov 2005

by Farhad Pouladi

TEHRAN, Nov 6 (AFP) - Iran unequivocally backed its main regional ally Syria Sunday, describing as "unacceptable" the pressure exerted on Damascus through a UN resolution over the murder of Lebanese ex-premier Rafiq Hariri.

"We support Syria without any doubt. Syria is our friend," foreign ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi told reporters.

"The pressure on Syria is unacceptable and is above all motivated by political pressure," said Asefi.

His comments came after the adoption by the UN Security Council last week of a resolution urging Syria to cooperate fully with the UN probe into the murder of Hariri or face international action.

"We think that this resolution has to be based on reality and cannot be arbitrary," Asefi said, in Tehran's first official reaction to the adopted text.

"Just like the Lebanese government and people, and like the Hariri family, we want the criminals to be punished. But the resolutions should not be politicised," he said.

Iran and Syria, already the target of US sanctions, have both found themselves in the crosshairs of the international community in recent weeks.

Tehran is facing intense pressure over its nuclear programme while Syria has had to confront accusations in a UN report that its security officials were implicated in the Hariri murder.

The two governments both stand accused of supporting the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah and interfering in post-Saddam Hussein Iraq.

Iran -- like Syria -- has also received a dressing-down from the UN Security Council, which condemned President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's comments that Israel should be "wiped off the map".

Ahmadinejad's anti-Israeli remarks reinforced fears about Iran's intentions towards Israel and prompted UN Secretary General Kofi Annan to shelve a November 11-13 visit to Iran.

Asefi said the postponement does "not mean that the visit has been cancelled" and the decision was taken mutually so that the discussions would "take place in a more appropriate climate".

"Mr Annan has not given up his idea of coming. We would like a delay so he is not under pressure."

Ahmadinejad had promised his Syrian counterpart Bashar al-Assad in August that he would soon visit Damascus to bolster relations between two countries facing "approaching threats."

Almost alone in the Arab world, Syria took Iran's side in its devastating 1980-88 war with Iraq, breaking with its fellow Baathist regime in Baghdad and shutting down one of its main oil export outlets.

But despite its long opposition to Saddam Hussein's regime, Syria declined to support the US-led invasion of 2003 and has faced US accusations ever since of turning a blind eye to anti-US insurgents.
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