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France wants "serious and rapid" work in UNSC on Syria

PARIS, Dec 30 (KUNA) - While continuing to express full support for the Arab League observer mission in Syria, France believes that the UN Security Council must "seriously and rapidly get to work" on a resolution on the Syrian crisis and the international community must act in view of the situation.
Russia has put forward a draft text for discussion but more than a week of talks and two expert meetings have not produced any progress on a consensus for a resolution.
France and several other countries, among them Britain and the United States, object to language in the Russian proposal, particularly a clear and equal attribution of responsibility for the violence in Syria between the parties.
Russia wants both the regime and the protesters condemned with equal strength for their behaviour, but France says they are not equally responsible. The issue of sanctions is also a point of dispute as Russia wants no sanctions while many Western countries are insisting on them.
Meanwhile, officials here said that the Arab League mission must be given time to get up to strength and deploy observers around the country.
But it was also stressed that the Arab League must help bring an end to the violence.
"Syrians are dying every day from repression," Foreign Ministry spokesman Bernard Valero said, acknowledging this was taking place even with Arab League observers on the ground.
"The Arab League plan must bring an end to the repression," he added, but he said it was not up to France to evaluate the performance of the mission so far.
"Let's allow the mission to deploy and get to work," he urged, noting that all observers were not on the ground yet.
The observers must be able to carry out their mission "with full freedom on all Syrian territory," the official noted.
He recalled that the Arab League plan must end the violence, obtain the release of political prisoners, get the Syrian army back to barracks and secure access to the country by international media.
"We are following the mission very closely," Valero said, also remarking that France was acutely aware of the Syrian government's ability to manipulate and dissimulate in this situation and France remained vigilant to counter this. (End) jk.ajs KUNA 301731 Dec 11NNNN