Arab News – Saudi Arabia is urging the UN General Assembly’s human rights committee to condemn Iranian and Russian intervention in Syria, a move that prompted complaints on Tuesday from Iran and Syria.
The non-binding draft resolution, prepared by Saudi Arabia and cosponsored by Qatar and other Arab nations, the US, Britain, France and other Western powers, was presented during a meeting of the assembly’s Third Committee, which focuses on human rights.
“It’s important to see the words used in the draft resolution condemning Iranian and Russian intervention in Syria,” said a diplomat, preferring anonymity.
Without explicitly naming Russia, the draft would have the committee saying the UN “strongly condemns all attacks against the Syrian moderate opposition and calls for their immediate cessation, given that such attacks benefit Daesh and other terrorist groups, such as Al-Nusra Front.”
The language is aimed at Russia, which has been bombing opposition forces in Syria for over a month. Moscow says it is attacking Daesh but Western officials say over 80 percent of its strikes hit other rebel forces.
The resolution would also condemn the presence in Syria of “all foreign terrorist fighters … and foreign forces fighting on behalf of the Syrian regime, particularly Al-Quds Brigades, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (of Iran) and militia groups, such as Hezbollah.”
The draft resolution demands foreign militias leave Syrian territory immediately.
It would blast Daesh and other radical militant groups for widespread rights abuses.
But most of the criticism in the draft is aimed at the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad. It voiced “grave concern at the disproportionate use of force by the Syrian authorities against its civilians.”
The draft says more than 250,000 people have died in the war.
A vote on the draft should come around the time of a ministerial meeting on Syria in Vienna of the United States, Russia and other major powers at the end of the week.

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