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Pakistan wants arms supply to Syrian sides stopped

July 24, 2013
Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United Nations Masood Khan.—File Photo
Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United Nations Masood Khan.—File Photo

UNITED NATIONS: Pakistan strongly criticised on Tuesday the continued infusion of arms in Syria and asked the Security Council and the big powers to take steps to halt arms supplies to all sides in the country.

“As we meet in this chamber, Syria is burning. Bloodshed continues.

Guns are not going to win the war – arms will not make peace,” Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United Nations Masood Khan said at the Security Council meeting on Middle East. He observed that the dates for the Geneva Conference had been slipping from June to July and now to September, and even beyond, “because each side wants to demonstrate military superiority before moving to the negotiating table”.

Mr Khan called on the international community to bring Syrian government and opposition representatives to Geneva for talks that would lead to a political solution and national reconciliation, adding that the entire Syrian nation was suffering. A meltdown in Syria will fracture the entire region.

On the new push for talks between Palestinians and Israelis by the United States, Mr Khan observed “the best way to give these talks a chance is to keep them away from public glare to the extent it is possible. Critics and cynics are already predicting the failure of the renewed engagement.

“Rumours and refutations continue to stalk the process. It is important to salvage this initiative.”

However, Mr Khan emphasised “two other core concerns: halt to settlements construction in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem; and Israel's recognition of the pre-1967 borders; and using them as a baseline for negotiations.”