US slams Russia over ‘barbarism’ in Syria

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The United States called Russia’s action in Syria
“barbarism” while Moscow’s UN envoy said ending
the war “is almost an impossible task now”
as
government forces relentlessly bombed the
besieged city of Aleppo.
The United Nations Security Council met on
Sunday at the request of the United States, Britain
and France to discuss the escalation of fighting in
Aleppo following the announcement on Thursday of
an offensive by the Syrian army to retake the
embattled northern city.
“What Russia is sponsoring and doing is not
counter-terrorism, it is barbarism,” the US
ambassador to the UN, Samantha Power, told the
15-member council.
“Instead of pursuing peace, Russia and Assad
make war. Instead of helping get life-saving aid to
civilians, Russia and Assad are bombing the
humanitarian convoys, hospitals, and first
responders who are trying desperately to keep
people alive,” said Power.

A September 9 ceasefire deal orchestrated by US
and Russia aimed at putting Syria’s peace process
back on track effectively collapsed on Monday
when an aid convoy was bombed north of Aleppo.
“In Syria hundreds of armed groups are being
armed, the territory of the country is being bombed
indiscriminately, and bringing a peace is almost an
impossible task now because of this,” Russia’s UN
Ambassador Vitaly Churkin told the council.
Britain’s UN Ambassador Matthew Rycroft said the
bid by the US and Russia to bring peace to Syria
“is very, very near the end of its life and yes the
Security Council needs to be ready to fulfill our
responsibilities”.
“The regime and Russia have instead plunged to
new depths and unleashed a new hell on Aleppo,”
Rycroft told the council. “Russia is partnering with
the Syrian regime to carry out war crimes.”
Russia is one of five veto-powers on the UN
Security Council, along with the US, France, Britain
and China. Russia and China have protected Syrian
President Bashar al-Assad’s government by
blocking several attempts at council action.
“It is time to say who is carrying out those air
strikes and who is killing civilians. Russia holds a
permanent seat on the UN Security Council, this is
a privilege and it is a responsibility. Yet in Syria
and in Aleppo, Russia is abusing this historic
privilege,” Power said.
As Syria’s UN Ambassador Bashar Jaafari began
addressing the council, Power, Rycroft and French
UN Ambassador Francois Delattre walked out of
the chamber.

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