UN council approves Syria monitor mission
Security Council unanimously adopts resolution authorising deployment of up to 300 observers to Syria for three months.
The UN Security Council has unanimously adopted a resolution that authorises an initial deployment of up to 300 unarmed military observers to Syria for three months to monitor a fragile week-old ceasefire in the country’s 13-month old conflict.
The Russian and European drafted resolution said that deployment of the UN observer mission, which will be called UNSMIS, will be “subject to assessment by the Secretary-General [Ban Ki-moon] of relevant developments on the ground, including the cessation of violence”.
Saturday’s resolution also noted that the cessation of violence by the government and opposition is “clearly incomplete”.
It authorises the UN mission for an initial 90 days to monitor the cessation of violence and monitor and support implementation of UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan’s six-point peace plan.
Ban will make the “assessment” on whether it is safe to deploy the mission. This would include the consolidation of the cessation of violence started on April 12.
There is no threat of sanctions in the resolution but the council said it will assess the implementation of the mission and “consider further steps as appropriate”.
Bashar Ja’afari, the Syrian ambassador to the UN, said his government has already implemented all its responsibilities in the Annan peace plan.
“It continues to assist the special envoy. And daily it is undertaking measures to underscore this, including the release of detainees who were not responsible for terrorist crimes and the delivery of humanitarian aid to the affected region in co-operation with OCHA.”
Pictured: The UN team did not venture out on Friday, the day when anti-government protests are usually held [AFP]