|Date: 02/06/2012 Time: 12:20:00 AM
Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Friday
heightened the tone against the regime of President Bashar Al-Assad, stressing
the need for the "united" international community to "urgently" take "bolder
steps" to compel the Syrian authorities to implement Joint Special Envoy Kofi
Annan's six-point plan and end the ongoing bloodbath.
"If the escalating violence (in Syria) shows anything, it is that we
urgently need bolder steps," Ban told a press conference in Istanbul where he
attended earlier today the International Conference on Somalia, the second
this year since the one held last February in London.
Ban's statement against Damascus, the harshest to date, echoed some
Security Council members that are calling for "some teeth," in the form of
sanctions, to be included in a new draft Security Council resolution, to force
Damascus to implement the Annan peace plan.
A Senior western diplomat told a limited group of journalists earlier this
week that this new draft resolution will be discussed "shortly".
"We cannot let the situation go on. Assad discards Annan's plan every day.
I suggested, and others mentioned, the possibility of crafting a resolution
that would put violations of Security Council resolutions and obligations of
Annan's plan under sanctions, under a Chapter VII resolution. We have to think
how to give the Annan plan some teeth," the diplomat told the group.
He stressed that such a resolution "would also be valid for the opposition
if it violates the Annan plan".
The diplomat did not expect Russia or China, with veto power, to approve
the new draft resolution, but said, "it's out there, and we have to think
about it," adding that the Council members had a "timid" discussion of what
options and how to move forward in a meaningful way ahead of the July 20
deadline for the Council to renew the mandate of the UN Supervision Mission in
Ban told the press conference in Istanbul today "it is essential that the
united international community bring its full influence to bear. Above all it
is incumbent on the government of Syria and its leadership to act in line with
their commitments to the Joint Special Envoy, as well as their moral and legal
obligations under international human rights law".
He reiterated that the UN has not deployed observers in Syria to "passively
bear witness to the slaughter of innocent citizens. We are there to help bring
about a ceasefire. We are there to record violations of human rights and also
violations of the Annan Peace Plan. And we will speak out so that the
perpetrators of crime can be brought to justice".
He said both Damascus and the opposition have committed themselves to
Annan's peace plan which offers a "realistic and achievable road map to