Call for 'speedy' solution in Syria |
Gulf Times - 08 June, 2012
Qatar’s Prime Minister and Foreign Minister HE Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jabor al-Thani urged the international community yesterday to speed up its search for a solution bringing a “peaceful transfer of power” in Syria, as he met French President Francois Hollande.
“We must speed up our search for a solution to maintain the country’s stability and equally there must be a plan for a peaceful transfer of power,” HE Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim told reporters after the talks in Paris.
A peaceful transfer of power “is really our preferred solution” the Prime Minister said as he condemned President Bashar al-Assad’s regime for failing to follow through on UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan’s peace plan.
“In the past the Syrian government has always agreed with the proposals that were made and then worked to make them fail,” he said.
“We need for Russia and China to agree” to a solution, he said, reiterating support for invoking Chapter Seven of the UN Charter to back the Annan peace plan.
The chapter authorises member states to take “all necessary measures” to carry out specific UN Security Council decisions and can be used in some cases to authorise military action.
“This does not mean that another solution does not exist, but we must continue working to find a peaceful solution,” HE Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim said.
Meanwhile, Annan told the UN Security Council yesterday that the Syria crisis will “spiral out of control” if international pressure does not produce quick results, diplomats said.
Annan renewed calls for the major powers to warn President Assad of “clear consequences” if he does not comply with Annan’s six-point peace plan, one diplomat inside a closed-door council briefing said.
“The longer we wait, the darker the future looks for Syria,” the international envoy also told the 15-member council, another diplomat quoted Annan as saying.
The council must apply “united pressure” on Assad, the international envoy added. Annan again highlighted that his peace initiative could not be “open-ended”.
UN chief Ban Ki-moon told a Security Council meeting yesterday that heavy weapons, armour-piercing bullets and surveillance drones had been used against UN observers in Syria to hamper their efforts to monitor the worsening conflict.
Diplomats inside a closed council briefing on Syria quoted Ban as saying the tactics had been used to try to force the unarmed monitors to withdraw from areas where government forces have been accused of staging attacks.
France will host a meeting on July 6 of countries that back the departure of Assad but said yesterday it would not include Iran in attempts to resolve the crisis.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Bernard Valero confirmed Paris would host a third “Friends of Syria” meeting as world powers seek a way to stop the bloodshed in the uprising against Assad.
“(It) will bring together all the states and organisations that want to bring their support to the Syrian people at a time when the humanitarian and security situation is becoming worse and the crackdown continues,” Valero said.
About 50 nations, including the US, Britain, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, will take part.
The White House yesterday condemned the “outrageous” mass killing of civilians in Syria and urged all countries to end support for Assad’s “brutal and illegitimate regime.”
At least 41 people, including 23 civilians, were killed across Syria yesterday, a watchdog said, a day after at least 55 were slaughtered in a new massacre near the central city of Hama.
Qatar condemns massacre
Qatar has condemned the massacre committed by the Syrian regime in ‘Al Qubair’, in Hama rural area, in which more than a hundred people, including 50 children and women, were killed.
In a statement to Qatar News Agency yesterday evening an official source at the Qatari Ministry of Foreign Affairs urged the international community, particularly the UN Security Council, to shoulder its responsibilities and take firm measures to protect the Syrian people from such heinous massacres, criminalised under the international and humanitarian law, ensure full protection to prevent the killing of civilians and put an end to the massacres committed by the Syrian regime against its own people.