Security Council has defeated a U.S. sponsored resolution that would have imposed an arms embargo on South Sudan
The UN Security Council failed on Friday to adopt a US – drafted resolution to impose an arms embargo and further sanctions on South Sudan despite warnings by UN officials of a possible genocide in the world’s newest state.
Seven council members voted Friday in favor of the resolution and eight abstained. To be adopted by the UN’s most powerful body a resolution needs nine “yes” votes and no veto by a permanent member.
Angola, China, Egypt, Japan, Malaysia, Russia, Senegal, and Venezuela abstained from supporting the resolution.
U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power told the council after the vote that the resolution “would not have been a panacea … but the arms embargo would have had some significant effects” in stemming the flow of weapons.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has repeatedly called for an arms embargo, warning that “If no action is taken, South Sudan will be on a trajectory towards mass atrocities.”
As UNSC rejects arms embargo, Egypt notes “patience” by the international community with South Sudan should not be misinterpreted as “consent.”
Japan said there are some progress in South Sudan and notable regional protection force, so it’s counterproductive to introduce sanctions.
Many of the countries that abstained cited IGAD’s call for no sanction and President Kiir’s announcement of a national dialogue as reasons for their vote.
One Security Council diplomats said the United States had sat on a far better chance to push the embargo last summer, when the government was facing international condemnation for its attacks on UN peacekeepers and international aid workers.
However, piling on a raft of targeted sanctions this time against senior South Sudan government officials made it harder for countries, particularly those with troops on the ground, to support the sanction resolution and that is a tactical error made by the US and of course a reason for the resolution to collapse.
Deeply disappointed #UNSC failed to impose arms embargo on #SouthSudan today. Fewer weapons would save lives. We will redouble our efforts.
— Matthew Rycroft (@MatthewRycroft1) December 23, 2016
7 votes in favour inc. UK.
#UNSC fails to impose arms embargo in #SouthSudan. A chance missed to help those in need. pic.twitter.com/E4vZ2fDogq
— UK at the UN 🇬🇧🇺🇳 (@UKUN_NewYork) December 23, 2016