Following an emergency United Nations Security Council (UNSC) meeting on Friday which witnessed Syria envoy, Staffan de Mistura, appeal to Russia to halt its airstrikes on behalf of over 275,000 Syrian civilians in rebel-held Aleppo, UN delegates walked out of Saturday’s meeting after Russia ceded the floor to the Syrian delegation.
Subsequent to Russia voting down a French-Spanish draft resolution calling for an immediate halt to all airstrikes in and military flights over Aleppo, Russia’s fifth veto on action in Syria, the Russian Federation offered its own proposal, which would have established a ceasefire, but did not include a no-fly zone over the besieged city.
Russia’s counter proposal earned four votes in favor, including China. For a Security Council resolution to pass, nine votes are required and the measure can not be vetoed by a permanent UNSC member.
Following the defeat of the draft resolutions, Syrian delegates were allowed to speak and the delegations representing the United Kingdom, France, Ukraine, and the United States abruptly exited the chamber.
Russia’s ambassador to the UN, Vitaly Churkin, whose country holds the presidency of the Security Council for the month of October, later described the meeting as a “waste of time.”
[The Telegraph] [Photo courtesy Shannon Stapleto/Reuters via cfr.org]