Obama vor UNO: Assad ist der Giftgas-Täter
Militärische Option gegen Syriens Regierung bekräftigt *
US-Präsident Barack Obama hat vor der UN-Vollversammlung zu entschlossenem Handeln gegen den Einsatz von Chemiewaffen in Syrien aufgerufen. Es sei eine Beleidigung des menschlichen Verstandes und der Vollversammlung, wenn man behaupte, dass irgendjemand anderes als das Regime von Machthaber Baschar al-Assad für einen Giftgasangriff mit mehr als 1000 Toten verantwortlich sei, erklärte er
am Dienstag in New York. Obama drängte den Sicherheitsrat, eine kraftvolle Resolution zur Vernichtung der syrischen Chemiewaffen zu verabschieden. Falls Assad bei der Zerstörung der Waffen nicht kooperiere, würden die USA notfalls auch militärisch eingreifen.
Die USA werden Obama zufolge ihre diplomatischen Bemühungen auf eine Lösung des Nahostkonflikts und eine Beendigung des Atomstreits mit Iran konzentrieren. Außenminister John Kerry sei von ihm als Unterhändler für die Atomgespräche ernannt worden, führte der US-Präsident aus. Er betonte erneut, dass die USA Iran davon abhalten würden, eine Atombombe zu bauen. Die USA seien ermutigt, dass der neue Präsident Hassan Ruhani von den Iranern ein Mandat für moderatere Politik erhalten habe. Zum Nahostkonflikt sagte Obama, die USA machten keinerlei Kompromisse, wenn es um die Sicherheit Israels und dessen Existenz gehe. Er bekräftigte, dass eine Zwei-Staaten-Lösung der einzig echte Weg zum Frieden sei.
Brasiliens Präsidentin Dilma Rousseff prangerte bei der Generaldebatte der Vereinten Nationen die Spionage durch den US-Geheimdienst NSA an. »Eine derartige Einmischung ist eine Verletzung des Völkerrechts«, sagte Rousseff am Dienstag in New York. Das Argument Washingtons, dass diese »illegalen Abhörmaßnahmen« dem Schutz vor Terroristen dienten, sei »unhaltbar«. »Brasilien weiß sich selbst zu beschützen«, sagte sie.
* Aus: neues deutschland, Mittwoch, 25. September 2013
Wichtige Reden auf der Generalversammlung im Original:
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DILMA ROUSSEFF, President of Brazil,
denounced the terrorist attack that had taken place in Nairobi, before drawing attention to the global network of electronic espionage, which, she said, had directly affected her country. She highlighted that citizens’ personal data, corporate information — often of high economic and even strategic value — and diplomatic information had been intercepted, as well as communications of the Office of the President. “Tampering in such a manner in the affairs of other countries is a breach of international law and an affront to the principles that must guide relations among them, especially among friendly nations,” she declared.
The right to safety of citizens of one country, she said, could never be guaranteed by violating fundamental human rights of citizens of another. As many other Latin Americans, she had fought against authoritarianism and censorship, and she could not be defend the right to privacy — of individuals and the nation itself. In the absence of privacy, there could be no true freedom of expression and opinion, and therefore, no effective democracy. In the absence of respect for sovereignty, there was no basis for the relationship among nations. She demanded from the United States’ Government explanations, apologies and guarantees that such procedures would never be repeated.
In order to prevent cyberspace from being used as a weapon of war, she presented proposals for a civilian multilateral framework for the governance and use of the Internet, capable of ensuring such principles as freedom of expression, privacy of the individual and respect for human rights, as well as the construction of inclusive and non-discriminatory societies.
She welcomed the choice of the post-2015 development agenda as the theme of the current session, and highlighted the commitment made by Brazil in that regard. She spoke about the adoption of a socially inclusive economic model based on generating employment, strengthening small-scale agriculture, expanding credit, increasing the value of salaries and developing a vast social protection network, through the Borsa Familia (Family Stipend) Program.
Recalling the outcome of the Rio+20 Conference, she welcomed the central role assigned to social inclusion and eradication of extreme poverty in the post-2015 development agenda. She then listed five major pacts launched in Brazil to support social inclusion, which addressed issues of corruption, urban transportation, taxes, health and especially education. In that connection, she underscored Brazil’s commitment to earmark 75 per cent of all petroleum royalties to the education sector.
Speaking on behalf of the peoples of Brazil, she reiterated their support to the reform of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), whose governance should reflect the weight of emerging and developing countries in the world economy. She also addressed the issue of Security Council reform, deeming its limited representation an “issue of grave concern”. Only the expansion of the number of permanent and non-permanent members and the inclusion of developing countries in both categories would correct the Council’s “deficit of representation and legitimacy”.
Turning to the Syrian crisis, she said: “We must stop the death of innocent civilians, of children, women and the elderly. We must cease the use of arms — conventional or chemical — by the Government or the rebels.” There was no military outcome, she stressed, adding that the only solution was through negotiation. Syria’s decision to adhere to the Chemical Weapons Convention and to immediately apply its provisions was “of great importance” and instrumental to overcoming the conflict and contributing to a world free of those weapons. Their use, she proclaimed “is heinous and inadmissible under any circumstance”. For that reason, she supported the agreement reached between the Russian Federation and United States, adding her repudiation for unilateral interventions, without Security Council authorization, which, she said, would only worsen the political instability in the region and increase human suffering.
She said that a durable peace between Israel and Palestine took on new urgency in view of the changes occurring in the Middle East. The time had come to heed the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinians for an independent and sovereign State, and to realize the wide international consensus for the two-State solution. She hoped current negotiations would bring about practical and significant results. She concluded her intervention by appealing for a convergence of political wills to sustain multilateralism, which was at the core of the United Nations system.
24 September 2013
BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States,
said that, although the end of America’s involvement in a decade of war was a shift away from a “perpetual war-footing”, a glance at today’s headlines indicated the dangers that remained. The convulsions in the Middle East and North Africa had laid bare deep divisions within societies. Peaceful movements had been answered by violence — from those resisting change and from extremists trying to hijack change. Nowhere had those trends converged more powerfully than in Syria. The international community recognized the stakes, but its response had not matched the scale of the challenge. Aid could not keep pace with the suffering; a peace process was still-born; extremist groups had taken root to exploit the crisis; Assad’s traditional allies had propped him up, and, on 21 August, the regime used chemical weapons in an attack that killed more than 1,000 people, including hundreds of children.
President Obama asked: “How do we address the choice of standing callously by while children are subjected to nerve gas, or embroiling ourselves in someone else’s civil war?” As a starting point, the international community must enforce the ban on chemical weapons. When he stated his willingness to order a limited strike against the Assad regime in response, he said he “did not do so lightly”. The ban against chemical weapons had been agreed to by 98 per cent of humanity, and strengthened by the searing memories of soldiers suffocated in the trenches, Jews slaughtered in gas chambers and Iranians poisoned in the many tens of thousands. The evidence was overwhelming that the Assad regime used such weapons on 21 August. It was an insult to human reason and to United Nations’ legitimacy to suggest that anyone other than the regime had carried out that attack.
The Syrian Government, he continued, had taken a first step by giving an accounting of its stockpiles. Now was the time for a strong Security Council resolution to verify that it would keep its commitments, or face consequences if it did not. “If we cannot agree even on this, then it will show that the United Nations is incapable of enforcing the most basic of international laws.” He did not believe that military action — by those within Syria, or by external Powers — could achieve a lasting peace. Neither did he think a leader who “slaughtered his citizens and gassed children to death” could regain the legitimacy to lead a “badly fractured country”. The notion that Syria could return to a pre-war status quo was a “fantasy”, he said.
Time had come for the Russian Federation and Iran to realize that insisting on Assad’s rule would lead to the outcome they feared: an increasingly violent space for extremists to operate, he said. It was important to support the moderate opposition within Syrian. The Syrian people could not afford a collapse of State institutions, he underlined, stressing that a political settlement could not be reached without addressing the legitimate fears of Alawites and other minorities. Pursuing a settlement was “not a zero-sum endeavour”, nor did the United States have any interest in Syria beyond the well-being of its people, the stability of its neighbours, the elimination of chemical weapons and ensuring it did not become a safe haven for terrorists. As the international community moved the Geneva process forward, he urged all nations to meet humanitarian needs in Syria, and he announced a further $340 million in assistance to the country.
Outlining the United States’ policy towards the Middle East and North Africa, he said it was prepared to “use all elements of our power, including military force, to secure these core interests in the region”. It would confront external aggression against its allies and partners, as it did in the Gulf War, and ensure the free flow of energy from the region to the world. It would dismantle terrorist networks that threatened its people and work with its partners to address the root causes of terror. It would “take direct action” to defend the United States against terrorist attacks. Finally, it would not tolerate the development or use of weapons of mass destruction, and it rejected the development of nuclear weapons that could trigger a nuclear arms race in the region and undermine the global non-proliferation regime.
In the near-term, he said, American diplomatic efforts would focus on two key issues: Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons, and the Arab-Israeli conflict. While those issues were not the cause of all of the region’s problems, they had been a major source of instability for far too long and resolving them could serve as a foundation for a broader peace. The United States and Iran had been isolated from each other since 1979, and he did not think “this difficult history can be overcome overnight — the suspicion runs too deep”. Although the United States preferred to resolve its concerns over Iran’s nuclear programme peacefully, it was determined to prevent that country from developing a nuclear weapon. The Supreme Leader had issued a fatwa against the development of nuclear weapons, and President Hassan Rouhani has just reiterated that Iran would never develop a nuclear weapon. He would direct United States Secretary of State John Kerry to pursue that effort with the Iranian Government.
He reiterated that the United States would never compromise its commitment to Israel’s security nor support for its existence as a Jewish State. Israeli and Palestinian leaders had recently demonstrated a willingness to take significant political risks, with current talks focused on final status issues of borders and security, refugees and Jerusalem. Israel’s security as a Jewish and democratic State depended on the establishment and stability of a Palestinian State. All sides must recognize that peace was a powerful tool to defeat extremists. Moreover, ties of trade and commerce between Israelis and Arabs could be an engine of growth and opportunity at a time when too many young people in the region were languishing without work. “The time is now ripe for the entire international community to get behind the pursuit of peace,” he urged.
On the Arab Spring, he said that, when peaceful transition towards democracy had begun in Egypt and Tunisia, the world had been filled with hope. However, over the last few years, particularly in Egypt, the world had witnessed how difficult a transition to democracy and openness truly was. The United States would continue its constructive relationship in Egypt and would reject the notion that democratic principles were simply Western exports incompatible with Islam. Promoting peace was the task of a generation, he said, adding that the sectarian violence in Bahrain, Iraq and Syria must be addressed by the peoples of those nations.
Although the United States had a “hard-earned humility”, the danger for the world was not an America that was too eager to immerse itself in the affairs of other countries, but that, after a decade of war — rightly concerned about issues back home and aware of the hostility that its engagement in the region had engendered throughout the Muslim world — might disengage, thereby creating a vacuum of leadership no other nation was ready to fill. Different nations would not agree on the need for action in every instance, and while the principle of sovereignty was at the centre of our international order, it “cannot be a shield for tyrants to commit wanton murder, or an excuse for the international community to turn a blind eye to slaughter”.
“If we don’t want to choose between inaction and war, we must get better — all of us — at the policies that prevent the breakdown of basic order,” he said. Through respect for the responsibilities of nations and the rights of individuals; through meaningful sanctions for those who break the rules; through dogged diplomacy that resolves the root causes of conflict and not merely its aftermath; and through development assistance that brings hope to the marginalized. Sometimes, all that would not be enough and, in such moments, the international community would need to acknowledge that the multilateral use of military force might be required to prevent the very worst from occurring.
24 September 2013
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