UK makes diplomatic protests over Syria violence

February 6, 2012 17:59

LONDON - Britain is recalling its ambassador to Syria for consultations as a diplomatic protest against Syrian President Bashar Assad's crackdown on protesters, British Foreign Secretary William Hague said on Monday.

The Syrian ambassador in London was also summoned to the Foreign Office to hear a British protest over the violence in Syria, Hague told parliament.

The moves come after Russia and China vetoed on Saturday a UN resolution that backed an Arab plan calling on Assad to quit, a move Hague called a grave error of judgment on Moscow and Beijing's part.

"I have today recalled to London our ambassador in Damascus for consultations," Hague said.

He said Britain and other nations would consider a resolution at the UN General Assembly, in the absence of a UN Security Council resolution on Syria.

Britain would increase pressure on Syria through the European Union, he said. "We have already agreed 11 rounds of EU sanctions and will hope to agree further measures by the (EU) Foreign Affairs Council on Feb. 27," he said.

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