ASTANA — Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov Thursday vowed there would be no UN Security Council mandate for outside intervention in Syria, indicating Moscow would use its veto to block any military action.
“There will not be a Security Council mandate for outside intervention, I guarantee you that,” Lavrov told reporters on the sidelines of a trip to Kazakhstan by President Vladimir Putin.
He said that allowing any outside military intervention against Syria to go ahead would be playing into the hands of the anti-regime armed opposition and discouraging any hope of a negotiated solution.
“There are sides in the Syria conflict, especially the so called (opposition) Syrian National Council, who are saying no negotiations with the regime, only continued armed battle until the Security Council gives a mandate for outside intervention,” said Lavrov.
Several Western and Gulf Arab states have refused to rule out the use of outside military force to end escalating bloodshed that the West blames on the regime of Bashar al-Assad.
Russia has refused to squarely blame the violence on the regime, insisting that the armed opposition is also responsible.