British, French Austrian FMs urge UNSC action on Sri Lanka

The British, French and Austrian foreign ministers urged the UN Security Council on Monday to take action to prevent more killings of civilians in Sri Lanka's northern war zone. "Are we waiting, all of us, to the end of the bombing, to the end of any life - not only suffering, but any life in this siege pocket?," asked French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner. Sri Lanka is not on the council's agenda because Russia and China, both veto-wielding permanent members, along with Japan and Vietnam, consider the war between the government and the Tamil Tigers an internal matter - not a threat to international peace and security. Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov expressed deep concern Monday "over any events when civilians are suffering" but gave no indication that Moscow would change its position.