Archive for Saturday, January 13, 2007

Rare double veto cast for Myanmar resolution

January 13, 2007

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— China and Russia cast a rare double veto Friday of a U.S. resolution calling on Myanmar's military government to release all political prisoners, speed up progress toward democracy and stop attacks against ethnic minorities.

The vote in the Security Council was 9-3 with three abstentions. South Africa, a new non-permanent member of the council without veto power, also opposed the resolution.

China's U.N. Ambassador Wang Guangya and Russia's U.N. Ambassador Vitaly Churkin both said the Security Council was not the proper place to discuss Myanmar because the country does not pose a threat to international peace and security.

Acting U.S. Ambassador Alejandro Wolff called for the vote knowing in advance the resolution would be vetoed.

"The United States is deeply disappointed by the failure of the council to adopt this resolution," Wolff said. "This resolution would have been a strong and urgently needed statement by the Security Council about the need for change in Burma."

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