Russia will not support a new U.S.-drafted resolution on Syria because it fails to urge both the government and the rebels to halt violence, said a top Russian diplomat.
“We cannot agree with the draft resolution in the form it has been tabled. The text of the resolution under discussion is unbalanced,” Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov told the Interfax news agency on Friday.
“Its main problem is the absence of a simultaneous call on all sides to take practical steps towards ceasing fire,” Mr. Gatilov said.
He stressed that Russia would not agree to a resolution that “contains any pretexts for using military force against Syria.”
Last month Russia and China vetoed another resolution on Syria in the U.N. Security Council because it failed to address a demand to end bloodshed to both sides in the conflict.
The Russian diplomat also warned the U.S. against rushing the vote on the new resolution.
“It is unacceptable to set any deadlines for adopting the resolution. The time factor is not paramount for us,” Mr. Gatilov said. “The most important thing is to negotiate a text that is realistic, lacks ambiguity, and is aimed at a stable settlement.”
Mr. Gatilov's criticism of the U.S. draft came at a time when Russia and China have stepped up coordinated efforts to find a political solution to the Syria crisis.
Russia's Foreign Minister is visiting Cairo for a meeting with the Arab League on Saturday before going to New York and China is sending an envoy to Saudi Arabia, Egypt and France to promote its new six-point peace plan which calls for an immediate end to violence and dialogue between the regime of President Bashar al-Assad and the opposition.