Swedish Statement at the UN Security Council Briefing on Syria
National statement delivered by Ambassador Olof Skoog on behalf of Sweden at the United Nations Security Council Briefing on Syria, 26 October 2018, New York.
Thank you very much Mr. President and thank you very much to the Special Envoy for the briefing this morning. Staffan, we commend your intensified efforts towards reaching a political solution and bringing an end to the conflict in Syria. We very much appreciate your update today after your visit to Damascus, although I have to say that the contents of what you report back on the response from Damascus is not what we had hoped.
We are deeply disappointed by the continued lack of cooperation by the Syrian government regarding the constitutional committee, which contradicts the Sochi final statement circulated by Russia to this Council.
We support your approach Staffan and your insistence on credibility, balance and international legitimacy, and therefore we call on the Syrian government again to fully cooperate with the UN and those with close relations with Damascus, especially Russia, to support such efforts.
We fully support Staffan and his mandate to establish the constitutional committee, constituting the first step towards a political solution, in line with UN Security Council resolution 2254.
The Final Statement of Sochi made clear that it was via the Geneva process, and the facilitation of the UN Special Envoy, that the final selection of the committee would be made.
The Special Envoy’s intensified efforts in many ways constitute a make it or break it for the UN’s efforts to convene a credible constitutional committee, and with that the legitimacy that comes with it.
Staffan needs and deserves the wholehearted backing of this Council. It is only through a UN-led process that we can achieve a political solution acceptable to all Syrians and the international community.
At this critical time, we want to reiterate our strong call for the Syrian government, that I believe everyone in this Council agrees on, to fully engage and support the UN-led political process and make sure that there will be real progress in time for the next meeting in November, as previous speakers have said.
Thank you very much Mr. President.