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UN Security Council gets Syrian letter on reported Israeli attack: president


08:50, February 01, 2013

Key Words: Syria; Syria crisis; UN security council; Israeli attacks

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UNITED NATIONS, Jan. 31 (Xinhua) -- The president of the UN Security Council for January, Masood Khan, on Thursday confirmed that Syria has sent a letter to the 15-nation UN body on the reported Israeli air strike on Syria, saying that the council is " monitoring" the subsequent heightened tensions.

Khan, the Pakistani UN ambassador who holds the rotating council presidency for January, made the remarks at a press conference here to mark the end of his month-long presidency. Kim Soo, the permanent representative of the Republic of Korea, is expected to take over the council presidency on Friday.

"Things are developing very rapidly, this incident has taken place," Khan said. "We have received a communication from the permanent representative of Syria."

However, the council president did not disclose any further detail of the Syrian letter, but he simply said, "We are just in the process of translating that communication."

Israeli war jets carried out an air strike at dawn on Wednesday, destroying a military research facility in the Jamarya suburb of Damascus, the Syrian capital, the Syrian state-run media reported. Western media said that the air strike targeted a convoy carrying sophisticated anti-aircraft weaponry from Syria to Lebanon's Hezbollah.

"The council members are aware of the situation and it is the preference of the council members, in fact they've been working on this for a long time, that there should be stability in the region, " Khan said. "This region should not become more volatile."

Earlier on Thursday, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon noted with "grave concern" reports of Israeli air strikes in Syria and called on all concerned to prevent an escalation of tensions in the region.

"The secretary-general notes with grave concern reports of Israeli air strikes in Syria," said a note issued by Ban's spokesman. "At this time, the United Nations does not have details of the reported incident. Nor is the United Nations in a position to independently verify what has occurred."

"The secretary-general calls on all concerned to prevent tensions or their escalation in the region, and to strictly abide by international law, in particular in respect of territorial integrity and sovereignty of all countries in the region," said the note.

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