November 26, 2020

UN should provide more international protection

The Arab Spring in Syria has receded because Russia and China once again exercised their vetoes in the United Nations Security Council resolution on Syria.

The resolution, aimed at bringing the miserable social upheaval in Syria to an end, was rejected on Feb. 4.

The Syrian government, led by President Bashar al-Assad, has increased its oppression of Syrian citizens who demand the resignation of al-Assad. Syrian citizens have been seeking political freedom and democracy. What the U.N. can presently do is demand the Syrian government to stop killing its civilians and ask al- Assad to resign.

Both Russia and China betrayed the people’s consensus in the world by their unreasonable and unforgivable use of the veto. Russia and China must take responsibility for massive killing by the inhumane Syrian government as a result of the veto.

The five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, which are Russia, China, France, the United Kingdom and the United States, have the veto power to reject any resolution. Russia and China used the veto because they do not want the present Syrian regime to change.

Russia and China are faithful supporters of al-Assad, and they were afraid of the recreation of the Arab Spring in Syria. The U.N. Security Council resolution on Libya was adopted thanks to the abstention of Russia and China. As a result, the Libyan people helped destroy Gaddafi’s regime with assistance from international protection. Russia and China feared making the same mistake they did in the resolution on Libya. This time, they clearly exercised their veto to the Syrian resolution in the U.N., which might get involved in military intervention.

Russia and China are afraid of the same possible political upheaval in their nations in the future. If such things happen in their nations, they would not want intervention by the U.N. In reality, such possible situations are unthinkable because they are big military powers, and they can easily use their military forces to oppress their citizens. They would use their veto for the sake of maintaining their governments. The U.N. cannot cope with citizens’ uprisings in their nations, even if people ask for international protection.

Those nations that have veto power in the U.N. Security Council must keep more responsibility to maintain peace and security in the world. The very recent use of the veto by Russia and China did not reduce the bloody chaos in Syria, and its use was the abandonment of their responsibility in the U.N. Security Council.

Both Russia and China want peaceful solutions between the violent Syrian government and pro-democratic citizens through these negotiations. More than 5,000 citizens were reportedly killed by the cruel government forces since the beginning of 2011.

Under such situations, it is impossible for both sides to start the negotiations. Russia and China must seriously understand what has been happening between the government and demonstrators since the upheaval across Syria.

Russia and China always exercise their veto in the U.N. Security Council to help autocratic governments and keep them alive in the world, mainly because they are in friendly terms with undemocratic nations economically and politically. It cannot be helpful for Russia and China to give a helping hand to dictators because both nations are not democratic nations with political freedom, and do not respect human rights.

When people fight against an undemocratic government to obtain political freedom and democracy, it always oppresses citizens.  As a result, many people lose their lives by the use of the government military forces.

The veto by Russia and China will allow the government to kill all kinds of citizens, including children, in Syrian conflicts. The veto should be used to protect innocent citizens from the bloody government forces. Instead, it is used to satisfy the national interest of Russia and China.

Wise people who love peace in the world should think of the use of veto in the U.N. by Russia and China that support autocratic governments and oppress citizens and demonstrators who want to pursue political freedom and democracy through the peaceful means.

In the framework of the present United Nations charter, it is impossible to change the charter or to restrict the use of veto by Russia and China. If the present situations in Syria continue as it is and the number of victims continues to increase, the U.N. will lose its meaning of existence due to the veto of Russia and China.

Citizens in Syria who want international protection from the U.N. must be disappointed by the global community. It is no exaggeration to say the U.N. has failed its important mission to bring peace and security to the world because unreasonable Russia and China have selfishly used the veto, and it has brought about further deaths and injuries in Syria without end.

Akira Komatsu is a senior global journalism major and a staff writer for The Journal.

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