The United Nations Security Council is to vote on a resolution regarding Syria on Saturday, with all eyes on Russia, Syria’s strongest ally on the council.
Russia initially rejected parts of the latest draft, but it remains unclear which way they will vote on Saturday, as hope remains that the resolution could still be passed.
Pakistan’s U.N. Ambassador Abdullah Hussain Haroon told reporters that the council was “very close… two words away" from an accord.
Whilst the latest text does not explicitly mention sanctions, parts of the resolution are still opposed by Russia, including warnings of “further measures” and that the council “fully supports” the Arab League plan.
A Western official commented that if an agreement was to be reached at the UN,
"It would scare the Assad regime a lot more than a more robust text vetoed by Russians."
"It would mean the Russians are slowly accepting the idea that Assad will depart and would also send a powerful message to people around Assad that it might be time to leave the sinking ship."
The US secretary of state, Hillary Clinton, reportedly spoke on the phone with Russia’s foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov, in an attempt to smooth over any opposition leading upto the vote.
Meanwhile, more than 200 people were reported to be killed in the city of Homs as President Assad’s troops shelled the city. The UN has ceased to estimate the number of deaths since the end of January, citing that it was now too difficult to confirm any casualties.
The UN Under-Secretary General for Political Affairs, Jeffrey Feltman, reassured the North's chief minister, C V Wigneswaran during a meeting in Jaffna on Tuesday that the OHCHR Investigation on Sri Lanka would definitely be released in September.
The aspirations of the Tamils as a distinct community, that want to govern themselves in their areas of historical habitat and want acknowledgement and accountability for abuses committed against them must be addressed by the Sri Lankan government to resolve the national issue,
“The new government has made no real move to show it is an different,” said the director of the No Fire Zone documentary speaking on working towards truth, justice and accountability for Sri Lankan atrocities against Tamil civilians.
Botswana's Minister of Foreign Affairs Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi expressed her country's hope that the new Sri Lankan government would seize the opportunity to make progress and address outstanding human rights issues.
Speaking at the High Level Segment of the opening sessions of the 28th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council, Sri Lanka’s minister of External Affairs said that Sri Lanka should be allowed to work towards accountability and justice on its own.
Addressing the UNHRC high level segment on ‘Strengthening of international Cooperation in the field of Human Rights’ Mangala Samaraweera said,