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Syria faces sanctions over UN probe

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Syria faces sanctions over UN probe

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France and the United States are threatening Syria with sanctions if it does not comply with a UN probe into the murder of ex-Lebanese Prime Minister, Rafik al-Hariri.

The US Secretary of State, Condoleeza Rice, wants Syria to take action. “They should not, as they have done so far, be dismissive of this report. The attitude of the Syrian government should be one that they recognise that the international community expects them to take it seriously and cooperate,” she said. The US, along with France and Britain, has presented a draft UN resolution urging Damascus to hold any nationals suspected of being involved in Hariri’s killing. The US Ambassador John Bolton said he was looking to get as much support as possible. “We want a strong signal from the council to Syria that obstructionism has to cease and cease immediately. We want real cooperation, documents produced and witnesses made available,” he said. It is uncertain whether the resolution will be supported by Security Council members usually wary of sanctions, like Russia and China. But economic sanctions are unlikely before the head of the investigation makes his final report to the council in December.