A senior Syrian diplomat has announced his defection to the revolution against President Assad’s regime as divisions at the UN surfaced once again.
In a video statement, the ambassador to Iraq, Nawaf al-Fares, called on the Syrian army to defend the people.
Meanwhile peace envoy Kofi Annan’s proposal to include Syria’s ally Iran in talks is splitting the Security Council.
US Ambassador to the UN, Susan Rice, was adamant that Iran should not be involved in efforts to find a peaceful solution to the crisis.
“Iran is definitely part of the problem in Syria. It is supporting , aiding and abetting the Assad regime materially and in many other ways and it has shown no readiness to contribute constructively,” she said.
Russia’s Deputy UN Ambassador, Alexander Pankin, said that Tehran and its ties with Damascus could play a part in relaunching Annan’s stalled peace effort.
“If we want to (talk) to all parties who have influence and Iran is among those who have influence, we need to bring them to the table, disregarding what we think about their orientation or ideology,” the ambassador said.
Although the 15-member council is agreed that Syria must face consequences if it does not comply with Annan’s plan, it remains deadlocked over what those consequence might be. While the US is leading calls for sanctions, Russia is still saying no.