United Nations fails to adopt Russian draft resolution on Syria

United States ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley addresses the United Nations Security Council meeting on Syria at the UN headquarters in New York US on 9 April

US requests UN vote on Syria chemical inquiry

The meeting Russian Federation is proposing is meant to address the possibility of potential USA military action in response to the alleged use of chemical weapons by the Bashar al-Assad regime.

The US push for a vote expected at 3:00 pm (1900 GMT) comes amid warnings from President Donald Trump of possible military action in response to an alleged toxic gas attack in the Syrian rebel-held town of Douma.

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons said on Tuesday that inspectors would travel to the Syrian rebel-held town of Douma to investigate reports of the attack that killed as many as 60 people.

A resolution needs nine votes in favor and no vetoes by Russia, China, France, Britain or the United States to pass.

Western nations objected to Russia's demand for the Security Council to have effective veto power over the findings of a new body.

Haley said the main difference between the US-drafted text and the Russian one is that Russia wanted to choose the investigators and assess the outcome while the United States text allows for an independent investigation.

During the Security Council meeting, US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley expressed Washington's preparedness to launch more military strikes on Syria if Washington learns that the Syrian government carries out a chemical weapons attack.

"Why didn't you wait for the outcome of the investigation you called for?"

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"Our resolutions are similar, but there are important differences. There is nothing independent about that", she told the Security Council.

The main difference between the Russian and the U.S. documents is in who and how determines the guilty party.

"Why do you need the mechanism, what do you need it for, when you have already appointed the guilty party prior to the investigation?" he asked.

KELEMEN: She made the comments just two days after Trump warned Russian Federation via Twitter that US missiles will be coming to Syria, quote, "nice and new and smart".

"The perpetrators are named before any investigation, and apparently they are to be punished", Nebenzia said.

She said that the United States, Britain and France had acted "to deter the future use of chemical weapons by holding the Syrian regime responsible for its atrocities against humanity".

"The United States is again trying to mislead the global community and is taking yet one more step toward confrontation", Nebenzia said.

But for the moment, Trump's administration is using diplomatic engagement as it works to try to get to the bottom of what happened in Douma - and then decides what to do next, a State Department official told ABC News.

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Russian Federation and Syria call the attack fabricated.

Russian Federation put two documents to vote.

Russia's UN Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia accused the United States of wanting the resolution to fail "to justify the use of force against Syria".

A draft of the resolution obtained by ABC News "condemns in the strongest terms the continued use of chemical weapons" in Syria - although it does not blame the Assad regime for the attack, instead establishing a United Nations.

March 16, 2015: Barrel bombs filled with chlorine gas killed six people and injured roughly three dozen others in Sarmin.

Right before the vote on the third text, Swedish Ambassador to the United Nations Olof Skoog requested a suspension of the meeting for extra consultations.

"We are prepared to sustain this response until the Syrian regime stops its use of prohibited chemical agents", President Trump said in announcing the strikes from the White House.

The Syrian Foreign Ministry also said Syria will help the OPCW to investigate the alleged attack. But Russia has since ended the JIM by blocking an extension of its mandate on numerous occasions.

Russian Ambassador in Croatia on "Barbaric Aggression" in Syria
But both Dunford and Defence Secretary Jim Mattis stressed that strikes were not meant to pull America deeper into Syria's war. Minister for Defence Marise Payne confirmed there was no Australian involvement in the strike.

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