Putin says draft U.N. resolution to sanction Syria ‘inappropriate’

Russian President Vladimir Putin. File photo.

(Reuters/ Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday a draft U.N. Security Council resolution put forward by Western powers to sanction Syria’s government over the alleged use of chemical weapons was inappropriate.

The Security Council will vote later on Tuesday on a resolution drafted by France, Britain and the United States to ban the supply of helicopters to the Syrian government and to blacklist Syrian military commanders.

“I think it is totally inappropriate,” Putin told a news conference in Bishkek, the capital of Kyrgyzstan, after meeting his Kyrgyz counterpart Almazbek Atambayev.

“It would undermine trust in the negotiating process. Russia will not support any new sanctions against the Syrian leadership.”

Russia’s Deputy U.N. Ambassador, Vladimir Safronkov, told reporters on Friday that Moscow would veto the draft resolution.

The anticipated resolution serves to follow up on a report released at the end of joint investigation by the UN and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in October 2016. The report accused the Syrian government forces and the Islamic State of using chemicals as weapons.

Russia has supported past UNSC decisions on chemical attacks in Syria, including the decision to launch the joint investigation and to dismantle the Syrian government’s chemical arsenal.

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