UN to continue consultations on Syria: envoys

13:43, August 03, 2011      

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The UN Security Council will continue closed-door consultations on Syria Wednesday morning after unfruitful discussions Tuesday, envoys said here Tuesday night.

The 15 Council members met behind closed doors Tuesday in the New York headquarters on a possible draft resolution concerning the Syrian crisis. Yet no agreements had been reached, and the envoys agreed to resume discussions at 10 a.m. local time (1400 GMT) Wednesday.

No "required balance" had been achieved in discussions, Russian UN Ambassador Vitaly Churkin told reporters.

"The Security Council should send a positive signal in favor of political recommendations ending the violence ... unfortunately after yesterday's and today's discussions, no final agreement was possible among Security Council members today," Churkin said.

Permanent representatives of the 15 countries agreed to refer back to their capitals and reconvene Wednesday to see whether a consensus is possible, he said.

"In the current shape or form of the text, it may not be a constructive and positive role which we would like to see the Security Council play in trying to prevent further aggravation of the crisis in Syria," Churkin said.

According to media reports, 140 Syrians were killed in the city of Hama and other towns across the Mideast country in clashes with Syrian security forces Sunday.

The violence over the weekend prompted some of the Council members to draft condemnatory resolutions, which have not garnered enough support to pass.

The Council met Monday for an emergency closed-door meeting at the request of Germany, during which a two-month-old British draft was presented with some technical alterations.

"There has been no change to the text which was on the table; there has been some technical update," Indian UN Ambassador Hardeen Singh Puri, president of the Council for August, said.

Brazil and South Africa have also spoken out against a resolution or statement.

"I hope members of the Security Council will receive instructions to allow them to modify some of their positions which are too far-reaching in terms of leaning to one side," Churkin said, adding that this would hurt their aim and efforts.

He also hoped the council members would "do everything possible to pull away from the brink of civil war where Syria is finding itself at this point."

There has been unrest in Syria since mid-March, when anti-government protests broke out in the southern province of Daraa and spread across the country. Syrian authorities blamed the unrest on "armed groups and foreign conspiracy" and stressed they would track down the gunmen who had intimidated people and damaged public and private properties.

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