Russia Vetoes Extension of Chemical Weapons Inquiry in Syria

Russia on Tuesday vetoed a UN Security Council draft resolution on the extension of the mandate of an independent investigation mechanism, which was tasked to determine who was responsible for the use of chemical weapons in Syria.

The draft resolution sponsored by the United States sought to extend the mandate of the Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM) of the United Nations and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons for another year.

Among the 15 members of the Security Council, 11 were in favor, two were against, and another two abstained. As Russia is a permanent member of the Security Council, its “no” vote means that the draft resolution was rejected. Bolivia also voted against the draft resolution. China and Kazakhstan abstained.

Prior to the vote, Russian ambassador to the United Nations, Vassily Nebenzia, proposed a postponement till Nov. 7, arguing that the extension of JIM’s mandate should be discussed after the publication of its report, which is only two days away. He told the council that a hasty vote was intended to “dishonor” Russia.

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