Russia vetoes extension of Syria gas attacks probe

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Turkish, Russian and Iranian foreign ministers will meet in Turkey's Mediterranean city of Antalya at the weekend ahead of a trilateral meeting on Syria in Russia's Sochi city next Wednesday, Turkish foreign minister has said.

Thursday's resolution received 11 votes in favor and two against, with two abstentions.

Haley tweeted after the vote that "by using the veto to kill a mechanism in Syria that holds users of chemical weapons accountable, Russian Federation proves they can not be trusted or credible as we work towards a political solution in Syria". The two documents had different timeframe - the Russian draft extended the mandate until May 16, 2018, while the U.S. version gave the mission 24 months since the adoption of the resolution. U.S. envoy to the UN Nikki Haley warned after the council vote on Thursday: "We will do it again if we must". "In such circumstance, my proposal is to withdraw the resolution initiated by Russia", Nebenzya said.

The United States and Russia, Syria's ally, have put forward rival draft resolutions on renewing the mandate of the Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM), tasked with investigating Syria's toxic gas attacks.

On November 2, Russian Federation and the United States circulated competing drafts renewing the JIM's mandate.

Britain's United Nations ambassador told reporters Tuesday that it's extremely important that everyone who uses chemical weapons in Syria or elsewhere is held accountable, and the JIM is crucial in determining responsibility. The vote was expected to take place later on Thursday.

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President Donald Trump urged the council to support the panel's continued work, saying on Twitter that this would "ensure" that President Bashar al-Assad's "regime does not commit mass murder with chemical weapons ever again".

Russian Federation vetoed a USA -sponsored Security Council resolution on October 24 that would have renewed the mandate of the experts from the United Nations and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.

While Russia agreed to the 2015 creation of the inquiry, known as the Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM), it has consistently questioned its findings, which also concluded that the Syrian government used chlorine as a weapon several times.

A competing measure by Russian Federation to renew for a year the mandate of the Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM) failed to garner enough support in the council, essentially spelling the end of the body tasked with identifying the perpetrators of chemical attacks.

Dozens of people, including at least ten children, have been killed and more than 200 injured in a suspected chemical attack in northern Syria, multiple activist groups claim. If the inquiry is not renewed, Nebenzia said on Monday: "It may send a bad signal, but the way the investigation has been conducted sends an even worse signal".

"Peskov added, ". We are talking about the countries that are the guarantors of the Syrian peace process, the agenda is Syria".

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