The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) on Friday failed to adopt a resolution on the mandate of an international panel investigating the alleged use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime.
This happened consecutively for the third time in two days, due to a negative vote by Russia.
Ever since Russia vetoed the UN resolution, it has become difficult to attribute the deaths of hundreds of civilians to any particular party privy to the civil war that has been going on for almost seven years and arrive to a conducive conclusion for all the concerned parties.
The mandate of the Joint Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW)-UN panel, the Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM) expires on November 18. However, had the Japanese resolution been adopted, the mandate of the JIM would have been renewed for a period of 30 days to allow time for negotiations on a wider compromise.
The JIM was established by the Council, unanimously, in 2015 to identify “to the greatest extent feasible” individuals, entities, groups, or governments perpetrating, organizing, sponsoring or otherwise involved in the use of chemical weapons in Syria.
It is the 11th time that Russia has used its veto power to stop council action targeting its ally Syria. After the vote, Nikki Haley, the United States Ambassador to the United Nations told the council: "Russia has no interest in saving the JIM. It will not agree to any mechanism that might shine a spotlight on the use of chemical weapons by its ally, the Syrian regime."
"It is as simple and shameful as that," she said.
In addition to Russia, Bolivia–another permanent member, also voted against the draft. A negative vote – or veto – from one of the Council's five permanent members (China, France, Russia, United Kingdom, and the United States) means a resolution cannot be adopted.
(With PTI inputs)