France calls for emergency UNSC meeting to discuss Aleppo battle
France, which takes over the presidency of the UN Security Council in August, will call by the end of the week for an emergency meeting at the level of Foreign Ministers, said Monday the French foreign minister, Laurent Fabius. Speaking on the French RTL radio, the minister said he would chair the meeting, which will be convened in order to stop the massacres in Syria.
"As France takes the presidency of UN Security Council on August 1st, we will ask before the end of this week a meeting of the UN Security Council, probably at the ministerial level in a bid to try to stop the massacres and to prepare for the political transition, "said the minister.
"We must try everything," he stated regarding Russia and China, who have so far refused any binding resolution at the UN. The French minister also cautioned against the spread of the Syrian conflict to neighboring countries. "We can not say that it is an internal affair," he said.
Fabius added he feared a massacre in Aleppo, Syria's second largest city. The French minister also expressed his opposition to the delivery of arms to the rebels by Westerners. "There are weapons that are delivered, according to information we have, both by Qatar, Saudi Arabia and probably others. (...) But not by us," he indicated.
The rebels said Sunday they had repulsed the assaults by the Syrian army against their positions in Aleppo, the second day of an offensive that raised fears of a "massacre."
Fierce fighting continued Sunday in Aleppo. According to a militant on the ground, Mohammed Said, the Syrian forces bombed in particular the neighborhoods and Salahuddin and Saif al-Dawla, which were seized by the insurgents last week. Heavy fighting and explosions were also reported in the neighborhoods of Bab al-Hadid, and al-Zahraa al-Arqoub.
The official news agency SANA has in turn claimed that government forces continued to hunt down "terrorists."