Russia seeks to drop the monthly Security Council session devoted to the chemical weapons of the Syrian regime
Russia, which assumes the rotating presidency of the Security Council for the month of April, dropped the session devoted to reviewing monthly report No. 114 on the implementation of Resolution 2118 (2013) related to the elimination of the Syrian regime's chemical weapons programme.
Russia had objected many times to holding the monthly session under the pretext of the absence of updated reports, which wastes the financial resources of the Security Council in useless meetings. It seems that Russia has been preparing for this situation since the last session held last March, when China alongside Russia refrained from making any briefing about this file.
Calling for putting an end to the mechanism of holding monthly meetings, Russia said in the monthly programme that it has published: The Security Council members have significantly different views on the course of chemical weapons in Syria; as each of China and Russia alongside some other countries have always complained about the frequency of meetings on the course of chemical weapons in Syria.
However, it is expected that many members of the Council will reject this programme and challenge Russia's decision ; especially since the April session would have included the results of the visit of the small -team that was deployed in Syria from January 17 to 22, 2023.
Although the UN Security Council Resolution No. 2118 (2013) came as a result of the “Framework for the Elimination of Syrian Chemical Weapons” agreement (S/2013/565) that was reached in Geneva on September 14, 2013 between the US and Russia, in which it approved the imposition of measures under Chapter VII of The United Nations Charter in the event of non-compliance by the regime. However, Russia obstructed the implementation of this framework, as well as the implementation of Resolution 2118 (2013) and vetoed the condemnation of the regime in the use of chemical weapons.
It is clear that Russia wants to put the Security Council before the option of dropping the file of the regime's use of chemical weapons, so that this would be a precedent in the work of the Council, which continued to present the report of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons over the past 113 months. On the other hand, Russia will also intend during its presidency to hold an open discussion on "the risks arising from violations of the agreements regulating the export of arms and military equipment", by which it means the weapons exported to Ukraine to defend itself against the Russian invasion, which has entered its second year.
Nonetheless, it is likely that the file of the regime's use of chemical weapons be returned to the Security Council's monthly to be recirculated during the monthly Council’s deliberations due to the Western position rejecting such a step; especially with the widespread criticism against Russia assuming the presidency of the Security Council; as critics urged that Moscow will use its presidential seat to disseminate information and promote its own agenda regarding Ukraine.