As their UN Security Council veto on Syria invited bitter criticism, both Russia and China shot back today contending that the half-baked resolution would have only sent an "unbalanced signal" to the feuding parties rather than help resolve the crisis.
Both Russia and China had stuck to their ally Bashar al-Assad in vetoing a UN Security Council resolution condemning the Syrian regime’s deadly crackdown.
The move that came amidst reports that troops had killed 260 civilians overnight in the city of Homs, sparked widespread outrage and condemnation from the West and the Arab governments, who were pushing for the resolution.
Defending their action, Moscow and Beijing said the draft of the resolution needed more work.
"The authors of the draft Syria resolution, unfortunately, did not want to undertake an extra effort and come to a consensus... The result is known," Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov wrote on Twitter in his comments on the issue. Earlier, Russia's UN ambassador Vitaly Churkin had justified the veto, saying the proposed resolution "sent an unbalanced signal to the Syrian parties".
His Chinese counterpart Li Baodong said pushing through such "a vote when parties are still seriously divided ... will not help maintain the unity and authority of the Security Council, or help resolve the issue."
In a commentary, China's official news agency Xinhua said the veto was aimed at preventing more "turbulence and fatalities" in the violence-hit state.