UN Council aims for Wednesday vote on Sudan crisis

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VietNam News English - 32 month(s) ago 2 readings

The UN Security Council powers hope to vote onWednesday on a resolution that could threaten Sudan and South Sudan withsanctions if they do not end their conflict, diplomats said.

UNITED NATIONS - The UN Security Council powers hope to vote on

Wednesday on a resolution that could threaten Sudan and South Sudan with

sanctions if they do not end their conflict, diplomats said.

China and Russia are leading resistance however to warning of international

action against the rival Sudans, who many countries fear are headed for all-out

war.

A resolution drawn up by the United States calls on the neighbours, which

separated last year, to "immediately cease all hostilities" and withdraw troops to

their own territory, in line with a call made by the African Union.

The resolution would threaten "additional measures" under Article 41 of the UN

Charter, which allows for non-military sanctions.

China and Russia, both permanent members of the 15-nation council with a right

to veto resolutions, traditionally oppose warnings of sanctions. And the resolution

could change before any vote, diplomats said on condition of anonymity.

China in particular has strong trade ties with Sudan and South Sudan.

"This time it is less the Russians and more the Chinese," one senior Western

diplomat said on condition of anonymity.

"If they keep on not liking it, they might abstain. I don't think they will veto," the

envoy added.

There is more pressure on China to accept the resolution as the request for

possible sanctions has come from the African Union.

"It is much more difficult for the Chinese and Russians to say no to an AU

request than a western plan," the envoy added.

Under the resolution, the two countries would have two weeks to

"unconditionally" start talks under AU mediation on their various disputes on

borders and sharing oil revenues, and three months to conclude an accord.

UN leader Ban Ki-moon would have to report to the Security Council every two

weeks on the crisis. If either side has not met the conditions of the resolution, the

council "expresses its intention" to "take appropriate additional measures under

Article 41 of the (UN) charter."

China and Russia are nervous even though no automatic sanctions are

mentioned, diplomats said. "They oppose even the mention of Article 41," one

diplomat said.

Speaking after talks with Sudan's Foreign Minister Ali Karti in Moscow on

Monday, Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said his country was ready to

support the resolution but no automatic measures.

"Yes, it may include measures of economic pressure. But I would repeat that this

is not an automatic decision, but only an intention depending on how the

resolution is implemented," he told reporters. -- afp

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