Voices from Russia

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Pushilin Demands that Minsk Guarantors Force the Ukraine to Carry Out the Minsk Accords

00 denis pushilin. donetsk peoples reprublic. russia. 20.05.14

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The DNR Official Representative of the Contact Group, D V Pushilin, the Vice-Chairman of the DNR Peoples Soviet, said that the statement by the Ukrainian Presidential Administration on the possible introduction of UN peacekeepers in Novorossiya indicated an unwillingness to carry out the Minsk Agreement, noting, “Unfortunately, the Ukraine ceased to be a guarantor of the Minsk-2 pact by its active attempts to push at the UN their idea of ​​deploying foreign peacekeepers in the Donbass. Poroshenko couldn’t have been unaware that paragraph 10 of the Set-Up provides for the withdrawal of any and all foreign armed groups from the Donbass. Of all the international organisations, the package only mentioned the OSCE’s role, which has the task of monitoring [the pact’s execution], so, by his initiative, Poroshenko actually discredits the Observer Mission. Once again, this proves that the Ukraine tries to derail the implementation of the Minsk agreements. Kiev consistently alleges that the OSCE is unable to carry out the prescribed in these agreements”.

Therefore, once again, the DNR calls on the leaders of Germany and France, which together with Russian President V V Putin, were the guarantors of the package of measures, to prevent any further provocative moves on the part of Kiev. Pushilin observed, “Bundeskanzlerin Merkel and Président Hollande declared that they’d guarantee that the Ukraine would carry out Minsk-2. Therefore, they now have to bring Poroshenko to heel, as by his actions, he ripped up the Minsk agreements”. Pushilin said that the initiative to deploy peacekeepers in Novorossiya, which Poroshenko allegedly discussed with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, is unlikely to see implementation, as Kiev can’t rely on an international consensus that such a move is necessary. He concluded, “I think that there are UN member-countries that won’t agree with Poroshenko’s initiative”.

In the early morning hours of 21 April, Poroshenko’s media flacks said that he held talks with the UN Secretary General. The parties allegedly “agreed to implement further steps for the possible deployment of peacekeeping contingent under the auspices of the UN in the Donbas”. There is no UN statement on the subject.

21 April 2015

DAN Donetsk News Agency

http://dan-news.info/politics/garantami-minska-2-ostalis-strany-normandskoj-trojki-ukraina-vyshla-iz-etogo-spiska-pushilin.html

Editor:

Let’s keep it short. Any deployment of peacekeepers would have to pass the Security Council. Both Russia and China are permanent members and have vetoes… do you need to be Einstein to see how this Mexican soap opera is going to turn out? Poroshenko is in a crisis and he’s grasping at anything. The only thing that people are betting on is when the misbegotten Ukraine goes under. No one believes that it can stand. Not even those writing pro-Ukrainian articles in the Western media believe that it can stand (except for a few deluded Galician Uniate nationalists). The so-called “Ukraine” ain’t dead yet… but it soon shall be… and the world will be better off without it. Good riddance to bad rubbish…

BMD

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Medvedev Fears Civil War in the Ukraine… McCain Rattles His Rusty Sabre… Thousands of Ukrainian Servicemembers Rallied to the Russian Colours

00 Slavyansk 01. 15.04.14

Patriot barricade in Free Slavyansk… the junta scummers still haven’t taken it

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On Tuesday, Chairman of the Government Dmitri Medvedev wrote on his Facebook page that renewed bloodshed in the Ukraine presaged a civil war, saying, “This is very regrettable, the cause of Ukrainian tragedy is that the legitimate authorities didn’t even try to preserve law and order in the regions of the country when takeovers of administrative buildings started. That’s why no one respected those authorities. Now, on the contrary, illegitimate forces attempt to restore order, which they destroyed themselves, as they rose to power through an armed coup. They fell into their own trap. The action triggered counteraction. An offense against the state (the coup in Kiev) led to popular protests in the regions. It was a chain reaction of events, both political and economic. Today, many people understand the true intentions of those who seized power in Kiev. It means that the path to a just society is clear; the people should independently choose their destiny. They should have the means of expressing their will by legal means and to take part in forming a contemporary Ukrainian state with equality for all nationalities and languages. They should do this independently, without interference from usurpers, nationalists, and criminals… without tanks and armoured vehicles… and without secret visits from CIA chiefs”.

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Speaking before the Rada, junta chieftain Aleksandr Turchinov claimed, “An anti-terrorist (sic) operation began this morning, in northern Donetsk Oblast, we’ll carry it out responsibly and carefully. The goal of this special operation is to protect people (!?). We must take decisive action in the Donbass during this operation, as we face a threatening and colossal danger, but we must keep it balanced and responsible. Most of the eastern Ukraine, in spite of everything, demonstrates stability, which is due to the current government’s abilities”.

Editor:

There was no military action in Donetsk Oblast yet… NONE. Turchinov is lying… but to whom? The Russians know better… the patriots in the east know better… even the Americans know better. However, the Western media machine picks up and disseminates the junta’s lies. If you believe a word of it, on either CNN or Fox, you’re clueless and stupid.

BMD

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US Senator John McCain (R-AZ), who is now on a visit to Estonia, spoke live on one of the local TV channels, “We should give weapons to the Ukraine so that it could defend itself”. McCain, the Republican presidential candidate in the 2008 election, believes that Russia threatens its neighbour, “Russia provokes the West by staging actions in the Ukraine’s East. Maybe, it wants to increase its influence on the South as well”.

Editor:

John McCain was so stupid that if he weren’t an admiral’s son and grandson, he would’ve flunked out of Annapolis (he graduated near the bottom of his class). The US Navy refused to promote him to flag rank due to his proven recklessness and imprudence. Most probably, his juvenile carelessness and disregard for good sense led to his shootdown… ever since, he’s blamed Russia for that and his injuries. In short, McCain’s a brave but eminently foolish man… you should weigh any and all of his comments in that light.

BMD

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On Tuesday, Aleksandr Ankvab, the President of Abkhazia, said at a news conference with Russian journalists in Sukhumi, the capital of Abkhazia, “We see with our own eyes that the country’s collapsing and that nationalist radicals are running the show. This is an illustrative lesson for everyone. I approve the recent territorial reunification of Crimea with Russia; this was fair from any point of view. A temporarily lost but integral part of Russia returned home”. The Ukrainian junta and the West claim that the all-Crimean referendum was illegal and refuse to recognise the Crimea as part of Russia, although Moscow repeatedly stated that the referendum complied with international law and the UN Charter, and was in line with the precedent set by Kosovo’s secession from Serbia in 2008.

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On Monday, the MVDU official website reported, “Interior Minister (sic) (Arseny Avakov) decided to create special units to maintain public order”. The post gave telephone numbers for information in Donetsk, Nikolayev, Dnepropetrovsk, Lugansk, Odessa, Kharkov, and Kherson Oblasts, but gave no numbers for other entities. The headquarters also gave an e-mail address where all prospective applicants could send résumés; however, it didn’t publicise what criteria it’d use to select members of these units. The post, dated 13 April, said that they’d raise the first special units in the east and south, then, in the central and western regions, saying, “The MVDU wants to attract more than 12,000 people from across the country to the new special units. We’d provide weapons, kit, and command personnel”. In addition, Avakov ordered establishing the “Vostok” special unit in Lugansk Oblast.

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00 Ukie fascists. 15.04.14

Fascist elements in Kiev… THIS is what America supports… and John McCain cackles his approval!

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On Tuesday, First Deputy Defence Minister Arkady Bakhin said at a video conference at the situation centre of the Minoborony Rossii, “We employed 9,268 former personnel of the Ukrainian armed forces in uniformed positions in the Russian armed forces on a contract basis. All of them received Russian citizenship and all have already received Russian passports. Following instructions issued by Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu of 3 April 2014, we’ve organised refresher training for all former Ukrainian officers now in Russian service; starting on 13 May, they’ll receive upgraded professional training in their military specialties at Minoborony educational establishments. In most cases, the officers involved will have a year of retraining. In addition, units of the Black Sea Fleet now employ 7,050 former civilian personnel of the Ukrainian armed forces. Drills to upgrade the qualifications of former Ukrainian servicemembers have begun at the Nakhimov Naval School in Sevastopol. The main goal of the drills is to ensure adaptation of former Ukrainian personnel to the norms of the Russian armed forces and to teach them the operational, combat, and technical and mobilisation doctrine of the Russian armed forces”.

Editor:

Thousands of Ukrainian servicemembers rallied to the Russian colours. NOT ONE RUSSIAN defected to the Ukrainians. NOT ONE. Draw your own conclusions. The junta isn’t long for this world.

BMD

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On Tuesday, around two dozen demonstrators at the Rada building attempted to break in; they demanded that so-called “Interior Minister” Arseny Avakov resign. Some stipulated that all security functions go to First Vice-Premier Vitaly Yarema. Euromaidan roughnecks guarding the Rada building rebuffed the assault, preventing anyone from going in. Right Sector and Nastup (Offensive) extremists, who’d earlier demanded Avakov’s resignation, were presumably amongst those who attempted to break into the building.

Editor:

Yarema is a brutal and vicious scumbag who headed the MVDU under Yushchenko; he aided the American extraordinary rendition programme in the Bush years. That is, he’s a known torturer and bully. He’s one of Yuliya’s most unsavoury confederates.

BMD

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Deputy Defence Minister Anatoly Antonov said that the Minoborony suspended handover of armaments and military hardware to the Ukraine from the Crimea to prevent munitions and equipment from being used against civilians, saying, “I’d like to point up that Russia complies with its international obligations under the Paris Charter, the Helsinki Act, and UN and OSCE resolutions… we’ve pledged to avoid supplying and display restraint on arms supplies to hot spots. The term ‘hot spot’ is a very proper description of the current situation in the eastern and southeastern Ukraine”. So far, Russia returned to the Ukraine 389 pieces of military equipment, including eight helicopters and three naval vessels.

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On Tuesday, the Kremlin press service said that President Vladimir Putin had a telephone conversation with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon Putin, noting, “Putin and Ban Ki-moon discussed the crisis in the Ukraine, aggravated after military operations initiated by the Kiev ‘authorities’ in the southeast. Putin emphasised that the Russian side expected the UN and the international community to clearly denounce these anti-constitutional actions”.

15 April 2014

ITAR-TASS

http://en.itar-tass.com/russia/727831

http://en.itar-tass.com/world/727842

http://en.itar-tass.com/world/727843

http://en.itar-tass.com/world/727851

http://en.itar-tass.com/world/727856

http://en.itar-tass.com/russia/727904

http://en.itar-tass.com/world/727906

http://en.itar-tass.com/russia/727925

http://en.itar-tass.com/russia/728136

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Monday, 9 December 2013

Secretary Ban Appeals for Safety of Missing Orthodox Christian Nuns in Syria

00 Syrian nun in Ma'aloula. 08.09.13

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Today, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon appealed for the safety of 12 nuns who went missing from a convent in the Syrian town of Ma’loula and all those who might be detained against their will in the strife-torn nation. Mr Ban’s spokesman said in a statement that the Secretary-General remains “deeply troubled” by the targeting of places of worship and religious representatives in Syria’s conflict. He said, “These concerns are most recently underscored by the situation of the 12 nuns who went missing from Mar Tekla Orthodox Convent in Ma’loula. The Secretary-General joins in the appeals for their safety and well-being, and that of all persons detained against their will in Syria. The UN rejects any targeting of persons based on their religion, community, or ethnic affiliation. Civilians throughout Syria are at risk and must be protected”. Media reports say that opposition fighters took the nuns by force a week ago from their convent, whilst a Syrian opposition activist said the rebels took them away for their own safety. The violence in Syria continues unabated since fighting first broke out in March 2011 between government forces and opposition forces seeking the ouster of President Bashar al-Assad. Already, the conflict has claimed over 100,000 lives and driven over 6 million people from their homes.

9 December 2013

UN News Centre

http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=46699&Cr=syria&Cr1=

Editor’s Note:

Reflect on this… both the neocons and humanitarian interventionists support the scummers who kidnap nuns, burn churches, and kill Christians. What does that tell us about those in our ranks who support such political sludge (on the grounds that they’re “Pro-Life“)? It’s skewed priorities of the worst sort… our brethren in the Orthosphere bleed, their houses burn, and they must flee for their very lives… and some amongst us (especially konvertsy) support those who arm the persecutors, due to badly-thought-out “family values”. It’s enough to make me hurl… what about the Syrian families brutalised by those armed by “Pro-Life” politicians? I guess that they don’t count… “They’re only backward wogs“… they don’t have enough money to count (nor do they live in the “right” suburb). Our silence on this as “Church” is disgusting. It’s time that we raised our voices and condemned the US government for all of its rogue actions since 1991 (especially, in how it’s attacked our kin in the Orthosphere)… and get rid of those in our ranks who support such. Remember the Easter bombing of Belgrade… “democratic” and “peace-loving” America brought you that one. I rest my case…

BMD

Monday, 23 September 2013

Lavrov sez USA “Overtly Blackmailing” Moscow on Syria

00 Sergei Yolkin. The Minister Got Bleeped... Not Infrequently. 2012

The Minister Got Bleeped… Not Infrequently

Sergei Yolkin

2012

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On Sunday, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said in an interview on Первый Канал (Pervy Kanal: Channel One) that the USA is trying to blackmail Russia and the world by forcing its upside-down Syria peace scenario on the international community. Lavrov accused Washington of excessively politicking the Syrian crisis. He said that the USA was using the civil war in the Middle East to “assert its supremacy” in order to make the region “dance to its tune”. Lavrov emphasised that this approach had nothing to do with the long-overdue peace process and the Russian-backed plan to neutralise the Assad government’s chemical weapons.

He called on the USA to come to terms with the fact that the world had become “polycentric” and it was no good forcing America’s opinions onto it. This was the first time that the usually-unruffled foreign minister lashed out at Moscow’s Western partners. Lavrov’s tone in his Pervy Kanal interview indicated deep tensions between Russia and China on the one hand and the USA-UKFrance coalition on the other. Lavrov’s interview came ahead of his trip to New York, where he’s to attend the UN General Assembly. The upcoming days are a “ministerial week”, during which Lavrov expects to meet with US Secretary of State John Kerry and other senior diplomats. The anticipation is that the trilateral talks between Sergei Lavrov, John Kerry, and UN head Ban Ki-moon will kick-start a new peace conference on Syria, dubbed Geneva 2.

Lavrov said that the recent publication of the UN inspectors’ report on Syria’s chemical stockpile gave way to a large number of insinuations, proving that the West never genuinely wanted a probe in the first place. Lavrov told Pervy Kanal, “The USA and France never actually pretended to make too much of this report. They claimed to know everything beforehand, saying their intelligence was flawless, although we were never presented with full data, whilst the evidence they chose to show us didn’t prove the involvement of chemical weapons”.

Lavrov noted that before the UN probe, an open letter by CIA and Pentagon veterans to the US President appeared on 8 September saying that the alleged 21 August chemical attack near Damascus was a provocation. The letter accused CIA Director John Brennan of trying to repeat the Iraq scenario by misleading Americans and Congress once again. The concerned American vets cited British intelligence as saying that the Syrian government wasn’t implicated in the gassing of civilians. The call went unnoticed.

Lavrov claimed that the USA intentionally spun the UN report to force its approach onto Russia and the international community, saying, “Our Western partners are trying to blackmail us… if we don’t endorse the UN Security Council’s Chapter VII resolution we’d effectively annul OPCW’s work in The Hague. It runs contrary to everything we agreed on with John Kerry… that is, we’d wait for OPCW’s decision and, then, shore it up with a Security Council resolution, though not under Chapter VII”. Lavrov suggested that the West saw the Russian-American brokered deal on Syria’s chemical weapons not as an opportunity to rid the world of the existing toxic arsenal, but as “a chance to push a brute-force resolution through the Russian-Chinese bloc, to topple the regime, gloss over opposition’s actions, and to assign the blame to Bashar al-Assad and get a free hand for military scenarios. They [the West] can’t admit their mistakes. They made a mistake in Libya when they bombed the country and pushed it to the brink of disintegration; they made a mistake in Iraq where they did the same blunders, in addition to launching a land operation and wreaking havoc in the country, which sees dozens of innocents die every passing day at the hand of terrorists. It’s no one’s concern anymore. Now, everyone is saying that Bashar al-Assad must go. Of course, they don’t want to talk about a catastrophe that their series of military operations caused in the region”.

Lavrov highlighted that two in three opposition militants are jihadists bent on turning Syria into an Islamist Caliphate. This could unleash a disaster in the entire Middle East. He also fought back the recent attempts to pile responsibility for elimination of Syria’s chemical arsenal on Russia, saying, “I’d like to point up that we can’t guarantee that Syria would give up its chemical weapons. We saw to it that Syria joined the anti-chemical weapons convention without any reservations, as the Americans did once. Now, Syria is a liable party to this document, meaning that the international community… or the OPCW, in this matter… can guarantee that Syria complies with it”. Lavrov also pointed out that international community didn’t need to send troops to Syria to monitor the process of chemical weapons disposal. He said that police were enough to protect OPCW inspectors and offered Russian security forces for this task.

Andrei Fedyashin

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Interview of Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov with Pervy Kanal

Pervy Kanal (PK)

There were reports that Syria supplied Russia with evidence that the Sarin attack on 21 August was the work of the rebels. What kind of evidence is it?

Sergei Lavrov

This week, my deputy, Sergei Ryabkov, was in Damascus to meet with the Syrian President, the Foreign Minister, weapons experts, and Syrian-based opposition politicians, those who’ve never emigrated and tried to dictate reforms from abroad. The evidence produced by the Syrians is purely technical. Now, Russian experts are scrutinising it. It supplements what Russia and the family of nations already know. Independent experts analysing the available evidence agree that the rebels routinely organise provocations aimed at accusing the government of using chemical weapons. This would create a good pretext for foreign military aid to their side.

PK

Based on the latest report from the UN inspectors in Syria, France and the USA concluded that the régime conducted last month’s Sarin attack. However, Russia concluded that the rebels are to blame. Why has the same report led to diametrically opposite conclusions?

Lavrov

France and the USA never made secret the fact that they didn’t need any report. Long before it came out, they said that they possessed irrefutable intelligence… which they never shared with us… that the régime launched the regime Sarin attack. What they did share with us doesn’t lead to this conclusion. Nuns at a local convent and visiting journalists quoted rebel fighters as saying that foreign sources supplied them with unfamiliar munitions, which they didn’t know how to handle, but ultimately used in combat.

Many times, I’ve mentioned a letter in which veterans of the US military and the CIA told the whole truth of the event. Accordingly, I’m not surprised that a report about the nature of the weapons found at the site… not about who used them! …was expeditiously seized upon by several countries, including the USA and France, as proof that the Syrian régime was the culprit. This approach, which led to that conclusion, has nothing to do with professionalism or science. However, it has everything to do with ideology and politics. After 21 August, Syrian government forces were gassed three more times… on 22, 24, and 25 August. We hope the UN team will come back to investigate these attacks as well. So far, the Western powers abused their influence on the UN Secretariat to leave these incidents uninvestigated, to try to get the inspectors to compile a report on the 21 August attack hastily. Fortunately, Åke Sellström, the head of the UN inspector team, announced plans to return to Syria to investigate chemical attacks that took place after 21 August.

PK

Carla Del Ponte, a UN human rights official, said that she believes that the rebels are the likeliest culprits in the 21 August attack. So do several CIA veterans, many independent experts, and defecting rebels. Why does the West remain deaf to their well-substantiated opinion? The ouster of Assad most likely portends power in the hands of Islamist radicals. Who’s interested in this?

Lavrov

Their ideologically-motivated pursuit of régime change blinds our Western partners. About two years ago, they said that Bashar al-Assad has no place in this world and that he must go. Now, they’re unwilling to admit blunder. They blundered in Libya, where their air campaign pushed the country to the brink of collapse. They also blundered in Iraq, where their invasion resulted in a continuing situation in which dozens of people die each day in terror attacks. Moreover, they aren’t prepared to admit guilt for these catastrophes. Their only talk is about Assad, who must go. The Western approach is all about politics. The West wants to show the world that it remains the ultimate power, which calls the shots in the Middle East. Russia wants to solve the problem of chemical weapons in Syrian hands. The West is after something different. If that weren’t so, its tactics on the UN Security Council would be very different. The Western powers didn’t even wait for the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to pass a resolution on Syria, as was agreed between US Secretary of State John Kerry and me.

That was the main point of our agreement. They’re already pushing a Security Council resolution invoking Chapter VII of the UN Charter, which provides for the use of military force against countries that violate international law. If they were after the chemical disarmament of Syria, they’d be acting on our agreement and preparing an appropriate resolution of the OPCW. The USA even resorted to blackmail with regard to Russia… support a UNSC resolution invoking Chapter VII, or we’d stop working on a resolution of the Hague-based OPCW! This is at stark variance with what Kerry and I agreed upon. We actually agreed that the OPCW comes first, and the UNSC, second… without mentioning Chapter VII into the bargain.

PK

The Western media pointed up that your agreement with Kerry elevated Russia’s Middle East role to a level unseen since the 1970s. Now, the West is trying to erode this Russian victory. What’ll Moscow do in the event the UN Security Council passes a threatening resolution on Syria?

Lavrov

Any Security Council resolution on Syria must have a basis in the conclusions made by the OPCW, and it can’t mention Chapter VII. Accordingly, no one can use such a resolution to justify unilateral military action against Syria. It’s quite strange that the West appears to ignore new possibilities to bring about the chemical disarmament of Syria. Assad’s government signed up to the chemical weapons ban and it’s prepared to comply with it immediately, without even waiting for one month, after which it’d be obliged to comply.

During his Damascus visit, the Syrian government told my deputy Sergei Ryabkov that it’s prepared to disclose the details of its chemical arsenal… including types, production, deployment, and storage. Ignoring these opportunities and pushing an ideologically-motivated UNSC resolution instead smacks of irresponsibility and poor professionalism. The West wants the UN Security Council to confound conclusions made by the OPCW with talk about human rights and the International Criminal Court. It doesn’t see the Russian-American agreement on Syria as an opportunity to rid the world of that country’s chemical weapons. It wants to use it as an instrument to override opposition from Russia and China, to make the UN Security Council pass a resolution that would whitewash the Syrian rebels, blame everything on the régime, and pave the way for outside military action against Syria. Moreover, any such action would give power to the rebels, two-thirds, or even three-quarters, of whom are jihadists from groups like al-Nusra Front and Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant. These jihadists are after a regional Caliphate. Looking a little bit into the future would help Western powers realise this.

PK

The emerging political landscape of North Africa and the Middle East is quite scary. It already includes a shattered Libya, a dangerously-destabilised Egypt, and a turbulent Islamist-ruled Tunisia. What does the West hope to gain from this?

Lavrov

I’m unable to answer this question. President Putin, too, so far, failed to get a clear answer from his Western counterparts. They only offer well-beaten mantras about democracy and human rights. However, to say the least, we believe that upholding only these without caring for stability in a key world area is irresponsible. Responsible politicians don’t behave in this way. Some analysts suspect that the West is muddying the Middle East waters in order to fish in them. I believe that this strategy is futile. Probably, it represents an attempt to clutch a straw in an effort to return the family of nations to a situation many years ago when the world was unipolar. Now, it’s multipolar, one has to govern it collectively. The UN Charter defines the UN as an organisation for collective action. Let’s follow this definition and abandon attempts to impose our standards on other countries and civilisations.

PK

Syria said that the destruction of its chemical arsenal would take one year and cost one billion USD (32 billion Roubles. 1.06 billion AUD. 1.03 billion CAD. 740 million Euros. 623 million UK Pounds). It also said that it’s prepared to surrender this arsenal to any country that undertakes to destroy it. Do we possess a roadmap for this destruction? Do we know what kind of technology will be involved?

Lavrov

The experts who accompanied Kerry and me in Genève already submitted their professional opinions to the OPCW. The OPCW will refine these opinions and include them in a draft Russian-American resolution on Syria’s chemical weapons. We’d have to bring many clauses… for instance, those on visiting disclosed chemical weapons sites… into strict compliance with international conventions outlawing chemical warfare. This isn’t that difficult, provided the West drops its arrogant insistence on a Security Council resolution mentioning Chapter VII. Unfortunately, it continues to issue warnings that it’d stop working with the OPCW in the event the Security Council failed to pass such a resolution. If it indeed follows through on this threat, it’d show the world that it’s after something other than the chemical disarmament of Syria.

As for the billion dollars, my talks with Kerry produced much lower estimates. Now, it’s up to OPCW experts to produce a more exact estimate of the costs. These experts would travel the length and breadth of Syria to determine which stockpiles we could destroy immediately on the spot, what munitions we should move to other countries for destruction, and what requires the construction of dedicated disposal facilities on Syrian territory. In Russia, we already operate facilities of this kind. We use them to dispose of Soviet-era chemical stockpiles. We’d also have to settle some legal difficulties, because the Convention stipulates for the destruction of each chemical warfare item in its host country. I hope there’d be no problem with this. Appropriate amendments are possible.

PK

Does what you’ve just said suppose the deployment of international military forces on Syrian territory?

Lavrov

It doesn’t. However, there’s an understanding that personnel capable of cooperating with the Syrian authorities in locating, protecting, and guarding the disclosed chemical warfare sites would accompany the OPCW experts. Working together with the Syrians, such personnel would prepare Syria’s chemical arsenal for destruction. To ensure the security and safety of these operations, Russia’s offered troops and military police to guard perimeters of storage and disposal sites. We only need a very limited number of international service personnel. Most should be simple observers, sent by the Security Council Permanent Five, several Arab nations, and Turkey. We must make the sides in the Syrian conflict aware that this contingent wouldn’t be biased in favour of any of them. They must also realise that provocations won’t pay. Under the Russian-American agreement, Syria, as the host country, bears the main burden of responsibility for the security of inspections and disposal operations. In Genève, we also pointed up that the Syrian opposition, too, is responsible for security around inspectors and chemical warfare sites. This also applies to the foreign backers of the Syrian opposition. We can’t allow them to encourage provocations by the rebel side.

PK

According to Israeli intelligence reports, on at least two occasions, rebel fighters briefly held Syrian chemical warfare sites. Now, the rebels are likely to possess Sarin, including imported material. Last summer, Turkish authorities apprehended two al-Nusra members carrying metal cylinders with Sarin. How can foreign governments know which rebel group possesses Sarin and how much?

Lavrov

Under the resolution in the works at the OPCW, all Syrian chemical weapons, no matter if they’re government-held or opposition-held, must be disclosed and destroyed. I see the Israeli reports as credible and giving the lie to Western assertions that only the régime possesses chemical weapons in Syria. Probably, the rebels stole Sarin, and, maybe, synthesised it in their backyard labs. The OPCW mission in Syria must include effective efforts to persuade the sponsors of rebel groups, including radicals, to make their clients submit their chemical arsenals for destruction. This is an absolute must under the international Convention that outlawed chemical warfare.

PK

Now, Russia’s a de facto guarantor of chemical disarmament of Syria. The West says that Moscow’s timetable to pull off the task is unrealistic. Is there any truth in this?

Lavrov

Actually, the Americans proposed the timetable and we agreed on it with them at our talks in Genève. Russia doesn’t act as a guarantor. True, we persuaded the Syrians to unconditionally sign up to the chemical warfare ban. The USA, by the way, signed up with reservations. Now, the member states of the OPCW act as the guarantor of chemical disarmament in Syria.

PK

Flying to Genève, did you have expectations that the Americans would be amenable to persuasion on Syria?

Lavrov

I never thought about this. I was happy… in the best professional sense… that we successfully defended our position without surrendering anything that we couldn’t surrender. Importantly, we didn’t resort to crude pressure and achieved everything through compromise, without indulging in ideology or politics, and in full compliance with the international chemical warfare ban.

PK

I realise there were checks and balances at work. However, what was the most difficult point at issue in Genève?

Lavrov

In short, the Americans wanted to put the cart before the horse and make us accept a Security Council resolution mentioning Chapter VII even before the OPCW came up with its conclusions. Fortunately, ultimately, we agreed on the other way round. The Security Council would discuss Syria’s chemical disarmament with OPCW conclusions on the table. It’d chart extra measures, probably, including extra international personnel to guard perimeters of storage and disposal sites. It’d also take into account any advice from UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. However, the West continues to insist with utmost energy that a resolution mentioning Chapter VII must come first, before any conclusions or advice. Once passed, a resolution of this kind would provide a justification for taking unilateral military action against Syria. We insisted that our Western partners respect international law, including the chemical warfare ban, and drop attempts to push through a resolution that’d upstage this ban and put their geopolitical and personal ambitions to the fore.

PK

The chemical disarmament of Syria doesn’t spell the end of the civil war in that Middle Eastern country. What subsequent measures do we need to end this war?

Lavrov

A negotiated political settlement is the best thing, with the only realistic basis being the Genève Communiqué, signed on 30 June 2012 by the Security Council Permanent Five, the Arab League, Turkey, the EU, and the UN. In the process of hammering out this communiqué, Russia persuaded most of the delegates to the conference to reject Western demands that the participating sides back a Security Council resolution mentioning Chapter VII and that Bashar al-Assad must go. Successfully, Russia and China argued that these demands are unilateral and hopelessly unrealistic. The Genève Communiqué urged the Syrian government and the opposition to put together a mutually-acceptable interim administration that’d govern Syria in the period prior to the adoption of a new constitution and general elections. Later, last summer, Russia asked the UN Security Council to approve the Genève Communiqué. The Americans disagreed, insisting the proposed resolution must mention Chapter VII and tell Assad that he must go. Now, there’s a strong feeling of déjà vu about the international diplomacy over Syria. Negotiators in Genève drafted a new communiqué that doesn’t mention Chapter VII. Meanwhile, at the Security Council, the Western bloc pushed a resolution that explicitly mentions Chapter VII.

The Russian government is a credible negotiating partner. Russia honours its international agreements and never backtracks from them. It also staunchly resists attempts to violate international law. Unfortunately, we can’t say this about some of its Western partners.

22 September 2013

Voice of Russia World Service

http://voiceofrussia.com/news/2013_09_22/US-overtly-blackmailing-Moscow-on-Syria-Russian-Foreign-Minister-Sergei-Lavrov-1317/

Editor’s Note:

The last sentence says it all:

Unfortunately, we can’t say this about some of its Western partners.

In diplomatic terms, this is strong stuff. Lavrov’s calling the West’s bluff and calling them “liars” (in diplomatic language, of course). Personally, Lavrov has a habit of using “mat” when he knows that his interlocutor doesn’t speak Russian. In this case, he knows that the Amerikantsy are arrogant brats who don’t know shit from shinola about the Orthosphere, the Sinosphere, and the Ummahsphere (not to mention the Iberosphere, Hindosphere, and Afrosphere). He’s calling them out… and the Amerikantsy are dumb enough to fall for it. This will only deepen the Russo-Chinese alliance, and it may cause India to have second thoughts about America’s word. Lavrov’s getting good press outside of the USA, he doesn’t give a rat’s ass about CNN or Fox News… he knows that they’re unfair and quite biased (what’s the diff between Bill O’Reilly and Christiane Amanpour? NONE… both are overpriced whores who owe their large paycheques to their being obedient lickspittle running dogs to their oligarch paymasters).

However, don’t let the Sturm und Drang from Washington obscure the truth for you… there’s going to be no war. The USA can’t afford it, and that’s that.

BMD 

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