30-strong advance team of observers, authorizes 300, Ban Ki-moon, Bashar Assad, Libya, Middle East, point peace plan, politics, Secretary General, Syria cease-fire observers, Syrian president, UN, UN Security Council, UNSMIS
Published April 21, 2012
UNITED NATIONS – The Security Council unanimously approved a resolution Saturday expanding the number of U.N. cease-fire observers in Syria from 30 to 300 and demanding an immediate halt to the violence that has been escalating since the government and opposition agreed to end hostilities over a week ago.
The resolution gives Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon authority to decide when to deploy the additional observers, based on developments on the ground including “the consolidation of the cease-fire.” Ban accused Syrian President Bashar Assad on Thursday of failing to honor the cease-fire, expressing dismay that increased violence is claiming more lives.
The resolution merged rival Russian and European texts and dropped a European threat of non-military sanctions against Syria if it fails to withdraw troops and heavy weapons from towns and cities. Instead, it uses language from the resolution adopted last Saturday authorizing deployment of the 30-strong advance team of observers which expresses the council’s intention to assess implementation of the new resolution “and to consider further steps.”