Russia blocks UN efforts to impose sanctions on Syria
Russia is blocking Western efforts to push through a Security Council resolution that would raise the prospect of sanctions against Syria unless the government gives unrestricted access to deliver humanitarian aid.
Russia's UN Ambassador Vitaly Churkin vowed to veto the proposed measure if necessary. Both he and China's UN ambassador were no-shows at a meeting Monday to discuss the Western and Arab-backed resolution.
"This text would not have any positive impact on the situation," Churkin said, explaining why Russia didn't bother to attend the meeting. "If anything, it would create disruption of humanitarian efforts."
Churkin dismissed the resolution as a "political" measure introduced "to whip up political tensions around Syria."