UN to Vote on Rival US, Russia Bids to Renew Syria Inquiry

The United Nations Security Council is due to vote on Thursday on rival U.S. and Russian bids to renew an international inquiry into chemical weapons attacks in Syria, diplomats said, a move that could trigger Russia’s 10th veto to block action on Syria.

The mandate for the joint inquiry by the U.N. and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), which found the Syrian government used the banned nerve agent sarin in an April 4 attack, expires at midnight Thursday.

The United States was first to ask for a vote on its draft resolution, followed quickly by Russia. A resolution needs nine votes in favor and no vetoes by the United States, France, Russia, Britain or China to be adopted.

Diplomats say there is little support among the 15-member council for the Russian draft, which Russian U.N. Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia has said aims to correct “systemic errors” of the inquiry, known as the Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM).

 

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