Voices from Russia

Friday, 23 February 2018

Russia’s UN Envoy Reminds Nikki Haley Russia has Legally-Elected Government, Not a “Régime”

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Russian Permanent Representative to the UN V A Nebenzya responded to his American colleague, US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley, who branded the state system in Russia “the Putin régime” and criticised Moscow for its policy towards the Ukraine. The delegations of the two countries exchanged remarks at a meeting of the UN Security Council dedicated to the maintenance of international peace by implementing the principles of the UN Charter. In her speech, Haley argued that dictators violate human rights and incite violence, and provoke regional conflicts under the guise of the principle of sovereignty. She cited the behaviour of leaders of Iran, the DPRK, and Syria as an example, and mentioned Moscow’s policy:

In the Ukraine, Russia remains an occupying force in the Crimea and a destabilising force in the Eastern Ukraine. Let me repeat… the sovereign rights of nations are fundamental. However, when we don’t uphold the principle of sovereignty by allowing the Kim, Assad, and Putin régimes to act with impunity, just the opposite is true. When the Security Council provides accountability for nations that violate the UN Charter, we protect sovereignty. Such was the case in 1990 when Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait.

Nebenzya responded:

I’d like to remind Ambassador Haley that Russia doesn’t have a régime, but a legally-elected president and appointed government. I’d like to ask the American delegation in the future to adhere to at least basic diplomatic decency. By the way, Syria, too, has a legitimate government, whether someone likes it or not.

Forming a New World Order

According to Nebenzya:

For some states, it’s difficult to accept the obvious thing. The era of the Cold War, as well as the post-bipolar stage, has ended. The world is establishing a new, more just, democratic, polycentric world order. Its essence is in the emergence and strengthening of new centres of economic power and political influence. The topic of this meeting is very relevant for the current state of international relations, as the principles of independence and equality of states, as well as non-interference in their internal affairs and peaceful settlement of disputes, represent the basis of good-neighbourly relations between countries and mutually beneficial cooperation for the common good. Unfortunately, throughout the UN’s history, the world witnessed numerous examples of blatant disregard for the UN Charter up to the illegal use of force, undisguised interference in the affairs of states, destruction of traditional social principles, forcible change of power, and the imposition of alien cultural and social norms. Look at the bombing of Yugoslavia and Libya carried out in violation of international law and Security Council resolutions, as well as the occupation of Iraq under false pretences.

Anniversary of Agreement to Resolve the Ukrainian Crisis

In addition, Nebenzya recalled:

21 February marks the fourth anniversary of signing the agreement on the political settlement in the Ukraine, which was violated the next day by oppositionists who seized power in Kiev with the silent non-resistance of its guarantors. Open incitement from the outside led to an unconstitutional transformation of power in the Ukraine, a mushrooming of nationalism and neo-Nazism, internal armed conflict, and numerous victims in the southeast. Russia remains committed to an early settlement to the Ukrainian conflict; however, as long as Kiev sabotages the Minsk process and tells tales to the world about what’s happening, there’s little hope for a constructive development of events.

The meeting on Wednesday was held upon the initiative of Kuwait, which took the UN Security Council’s monthly presidency in February.

22 February 2018

TASS

http://tass.com/politics/991188

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Friday, 7 April 2017

Masterminds of Aggression Against Syria to bear Responsibility for its Consequences: Safronkov at UN

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Russian Deputy Ambassador to the UN V K Safronkov told reporters after a closed-doors meeting in the UN Security Council that Russia is receiving “direct signals” that a military operation is under preparation in Syria and warns that those behind it will bear the responsibility for all its consequences. The meeting took place amidst media reports on an upcoming military operation in Syria. Safronkov said:

We’re receiving direct signals here that they’re preparing such an operation. Those who concoct such projects will bear the responsibility for all possible consequences.

Less than half-an-hour after the meeting, the first reports came that the USA launched missile strikes on Syria. According to the NBC TV, the strikes came in response to what Washington alleges was the Syrian government’s use of banned chemical weapons in Idlib Governate. The Americans launched TLAM (Tomahawk Land-Attack) cruise missiles at  Ash Sha’irat Airbase. US intelligence alleged that the base was the source of the supposed chemical attack.

7 April 2017

TASS

http://tass.com/politics/939903

Editor:

The irresponsibility and vacuity of this is overwhelming. If you needed proof that Donald Trump is a vicious child who strikes out when vexed, this is your proof.

BMD

Thursday, 6 April 2017

Here’s Why Donald Trump is Unlikely to Attack Syria

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US threats to attack Syria look less strong than parts of the media have made them appear and the US military is certain to oppose such action. The debate about the Syrian chemical attack yesterday and President Trump’s comments during a news conference with the King of Jordan led to speculation that the USA might be readying an attack on Syria. The speculation stems from the fact that US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley said that if the UN Security Council fails to take action over the chemical attack the USA might consider taking “unilateral action”, whilst President Trump himself made comments during the news conference that appeared to leave the military option open.

Unfortunately, on any international issue, one can never completely rule out the possibility of unilateral military action by the USA. However, on balance, neither Haley’s comment nor President Trump’s comment, seem to presage military action. Haley made her comment during a debate in the UN Security Council about the setting up of an investigation to look into the details of the chemical attack. No one questions that such an investigation should take place. The draft Resolution prepared by the Western powers… as with every Resolution the Western powers proposed during the Syrian crisis… is absurdly unbalanced, effectively blaming the Syrian government for the chemical attack before the investigation takes place. However, even this Resolution conceded that we need an investigation, especially after the relevant UN bodies said that they couldn’t themselves say who was responsible for the chemical attack. Russia, for its part, prepared its own draft Resolution that… far more neutrally… calls for an investigation.

It’s difficult to avoid the impression that Haley’s comment was part of the game of bluff and counter-bluff that nowadays regularly takes place in the UN Security Council. Specifically, she appears to have been trying to scare Russia into agreeing to the Western draft Resolution and to drop its own. Russia is most unlikely to let this kind of bluff intimidate it. Having already ruled the West’s draft Resolution out, it’d almost certainly persist in rejecting it. As for Trump’s comments, as the entirety of his words during the press conference show, he didn’t directly threaten unilateral US military action in Syria but made his comments when pressed to say by a journalist whether he was considering military action. He declined to give any concrete answer one way or the other, but the clear impression from his comments is that he isn’t contemplating it.

Overall, the impression President Trump’s news conference gave was that Trump’s focus remains overwhelmingly on fighting ISIS… he said far more about that than about the chemical attack in Syria… and that although he doesn’t want to give more ammunition to his domestic opponents by denying the Syrian government’s responsibility for the chemical attack, he tried to shift ultimate responsibility for the likely lack of a US reaction away from himself onto President Obama. Ultimately, the same factors that deterred a US military attack to lift the Syrian army’s siege of eastern Aleppo last autumn remain in place today. The Russian air defence system with its S400 and S300 SAMs is still in Syria. Last autumn, The US military made clear their deep reluctance to engage this system and nothing since has happened to change their views. More than any other US President in recent years, Trump looks to the US military for political support. It’s even less credible that he’d go against their advice than President Obama did. In light of all this, a unilateral US attack on the Syrian military on anything like the necessary scale to affect the course of the Syrian war is extremely unlikely.

6 April 2017

Alexander Mercouris

The Duran

http://theduran.com/heres-why-donald-trump-is-unlikely-to-attack-syria/

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

The Ukraine Blocks Commemorative Resolution for Russian Representative V I Churkin at the UN

00 russian UN Ambassador Vitaly Churkin. 19.01.15

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Minister of Foreign Affairs S V Lavrov said of the Ukraine’s decision to block a commemorative resolution by the UN Security Council dedicated to late Russian ambassador V I Churkin:

I know how the UN works. I believe that [the Ukrainian] permanent representative wouldn’t do this on his own. This means that they ordered him to do it. This goes against Christian values. It’s beyond good and evil. Thanks to the current Ukrainian authorities, however, we’re accustomed to the fact that someone in their country treats Russians, and anyone else who refuses to dance to the tune of the neo-Nazis, precisely like that.

The Ukraine, which chairs the UN Security Council this month, cited “lack of precedent” as the reason for blocking a commemorative UN Security Council resolution for Churkin. As a result, it only released and published a press statement. If in explaining its decision, the Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs meant to imply that former UNSC ambassadors didn’t have commemorative resolutions passed after their death, then, it clearly missed differences in circumstances. V I Churkin wasn’t only the longest-serving ambassador in the UN Security Council but the UK’s Ambassador to the UN Matthew John Rycroft noted that he was “a diplomatic giant” who “stood out amongst all the other 193 ambassadors”. Churkin died unexpectedly whilst on active duty, this has never happened before in the history of the UNSC, and if not for anything else (including Churkin’s enormous accomplishments), this reason alone warrants a special commemorative resolution. Sputnik reported the following details:

Earlier today, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman M V Zakharova wrote on her Facebook page that this decision is “the essence of the current Ukrainian authorities”. Kremlin spokesman D S Peskov also commented that the Ukraine’s behaviour “isn’t at all as important as the loss that Russia’s diplomacy suffered”.

Russian ambassador to the UN V I Churkin passed away on Monday 20 February in New York. Churkin was the Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the UN and its representative in the UN Security Council from April 2006. The diplomat would have been 65-years-old on Tuesday 21 February.

21 February 2017

Sergei Gladysh

The Duran

http://theduran.com/breaking-ukraine-blocks-commemorative-resolution-vitaly-churkin-un/

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