Report: Russia will not back UN call for Assad to go

January 27, 2012 15:29

MOSCOW - Russia will not support any UN Security Council resolution demanding Syrian President Bashar Assad resign, a senior Russian diplomat was quoted as saying on Friday.

He stopped short of saying Moscow would veto a Western-Arab draft if the call for Assad to step aside was not removed.

"Any decision about a future political settlement in Syria must be made during the political process without ... preliminary conditions, and the demand for Assad's resignation is a preliminary condition," Interfax news agency quoted Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov as saying.

"We cannot support a call to support Assad's departure in any UN Security Council resolution," he was quoted a saying.

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