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With India at helm, UNSC to push for Libya, Syria peace

world Updated: Aug 05, 2011 01:12 IST
Jayanth Jacob

After getting the presidency at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) after a gap of 19 years, India has decided not to spare any efforts to re-establish its credentials and continue in hot pursuit of being a permanent member of the world body.

Close on the heels of it demanding an end to the use of force by the Syrian authorities, India will soon push for a ceasefire in Libya. It also wants to bring new ideas to the table on the issue of UN peace-keeping. http://www.hindustantimes.com/images/HTPopups/050811/05_08_11-metro9.jpg

On Wednesday, the UN Security Council under India's presidency called on Syrian authorities to cease the use of force, saying an inclusive and Syrian-led political process is the only solution to the crisis.

The council chaired by Hardeep Puri, India's permanent representative to the UN, said in its presidential statement on Wednesday that the world body should aim at “effectively addressing the legitimate aspirations and concerns of the population which will allow the full exercise of fundamental freedoms for its entire population, including that of expression and peaceful assembly.”

“The security council expresses its grave concern at the deteriorating situation in Syria, and expresses profound regret at the death of many hundreds of people. The council condemns the widespread violations of human rights and the use of force against civilians by the Syrian authorities,” the statement said.

At least 120 individuals have reportedly been killed in the city of Hama since Friday as Syrian security forces used tanks, mortar shells and heavy machine guns against civilian demonstrators.

Going against what the West thinks on the issue, India will soon push for a ceasefire in Libya.

“I am particularly worried, if I may say so, about the situation in Libya. With the month of Ramadan, the month of prayer and fasting starting on the August 1, we would be happy if there could cessation of hostilities for the month of Ramadan in Libya,” Puri had said earlier this week.

The council, of which India is holding the rotating Presidency this month, said the Syrian authorities should respect human rights and comply with their obligations under applicable international law.

“Those responsible for the violence should be held accountable,” it said.