• France's news in English

France to propose UN resolution on Syria

Ben McPartland · 10 Sep 2013, 11:38

Published: 10 Sep 2013 11:38 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Speaking at a press conference Fabius said the resolution will be presented later on Tuesday.

Fabius said the resolution would require Assad to offer full disclosure of his chemical weapons programme and that his arsenal  be dismantled “without delay”.

The foreign minister says the resolution will also demand that the perpetrators of the chemical attack in Damascus that left scores dead, be handed over to the International Criminal Court to face justice.

If the terms are not adhered to then the resolution will commit the UN to "serious measures", Fabius said.

Speaking earlier in the day about Russia's propsosal that Bashar al-Assad hands over the chemical arms to international observers Fabius insisted that the Syrian president "commit himself without delay" to the elimination of his country's chemical weapons arsenal.

"The proposal of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov merits close examination," Fabius said, demanding that Assad "commit himself without delay to put his chemical arsenal under international control and to let all of it be destroyed".

Assad "must commit without delay to put his entire chemical arsenal under international control and have it destroyed", he said adding that this "operation must be carried out on the basis of a binding Security Council resolution, with a short timetable and firm consequences if he does not respect his commitments."

And the International Criminal Court must get involved because "those responsible for the August 21 chemical massacre must no go unpunished".

"We demand precise, quick and verifiable commitments by the Syrian regime," he added.

French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian also said on Tuesday that international pressure had worked, after a plan emerged to head off punitive US air strikes on Syria by destroying the regime's chemical weapons.

"It's an opening. It must be seized upon and Bashar al-Assad's regime must formally respond and firmly engage to it, and it must be implemented quickly," Le Drian said. "The international pressure worked."German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she hoped "action" would follow Russia's proposal, and that it was not just a way to buy time.

"Today there was an interesting proposal from Russia, which called on Syria for the first time to place its chemical weapons under international control," said Merkel on German public television speaking to a group of German voters.

Story continues below…

"If this is followed by action and not about buying time and this materialises, then Germany will push for that road to be followed," she said.

"Everything must be tried to achieve this without military intervention," she added, referring to the threat of US-led military action to punish the Assad regime for its alleged chemical attack.

Merkel, who is seeking re-election for a third term in September 22 poll, also again stressed that "Germany will under no circumstances" be part of any military strike.

France and the United States claim growing international support for military strikes to punish the Syrian regime for the alleged chemical attack, while Russia, Syria's staunchest ally, on Monday seized the diplomatic initiative with its plan to head off the threat of US military strikes.

Ben McPartland (ben.mcpartland@thelocal.com)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Where exactly in France are Calais migrants being sent?
Photo: AFP

Here's where the 8,000 migrants in Calais are heading.

The annoying questions only a half French, half British person can answer
Photo: Beery/Flickr/AFP

Being half French, half British is means you get asked a lot of questions (and some of them can be a little annoying.)

Migrants bussed out of Calais Jungle to all corners of France
All photos: AFP

Hundreds of migrants are being bussed across France on Monday ahead of the demolition of the Jungle camp.

The must-see French films of the millennium - Part One
A Prophet. Photo: YouTube Screengrab

Looking for something to watch?

The must-see French films of the millennium - Part Two
Rust and Bone. Photo: YouTube Screengrab

The newest French films you need to see before you die (or alternatively when you get some spare time).

Election Watch
Presidential hopeful reckons a pain au chocolat is 10 cents

So France happily takes the pastry out of him.

French ministry of defence officials die in plane crash
Screengrab: eddydeg/Twitter

The French Ministry of Defence officials were killed on Monday when a light aircraft went down on the island of Malta.

Revealed: The ten most stolen cars in France
A Smart car in Paris. Photo: JR_Paris/Flickr

Thieves in France are getting a taste for luxury cars, it seems.

Analysis - France migrant crisis
Migrant crisis won't end with Calais 'Jungle' closure
All Photos: AFP

The Jungle camp may be being cleared but this won't be the end of the migrant crisis in France.

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie 'to sell their French chateau'
All photos: AFP

Want to live where Brangelina got married?

The annoying questions only a half French, half Brit can answer
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Forget Brangelina's chateau - here are nine others you've got to see
The must-see French films of the millennium - Part One
How life for expats in France has changed over the years
Why Toulouse is THE place to be in France right now
Video: New homage to Paris shows the 'real side' of city
The 'most dangerous' animals you can find in France
Swap London fogs for Paris frogs: France woos the Brits
Anger after presenter kisses woman's breasts on live TV
Is France finally set for a cold winter this year?
IN PICS: The story of the 'ghost Metro stations' of Paris
How to make France's 'most-loved' dish: Magret de Canard
Welcome to the flipside: 'I'm not living the dream in France'
Do the French really still eat frogs' legs?
French 'delicacies' foreigners really find hard to stomach
French are the 'world's most pessimistic' about the future
Why the French should not be gloomy about the future
This is the most useful French lesson you will ever have. How to get angry
Why is there a giant clitoris in a field in southern France?
French pastry wars: Pain au chocolat versus chocolatine
Countdown: The ten dishes the French love the most
Expats or immigrants in France: Is there a difference?
How the French reinvented dozens of English words
jobs available