Stockholm Aug 28, 2013 — The former UN-weapons inspector in Iraq, head of IAEA and foreign minister of Sweden, Hans Blix, today called for a UN initiative to bring the superpowers together in making a UNSC resolution condemning the use of chemical weapons in Syria, without blaming any side. The resolution would bring back the the UN into the center of the process and make it possible to move back to the peace negotiations for a settlement of the Syria crisis. Blix was interviewed in the Swedish public radio morningnews program and said: “Everyone wants to stop the war, but what is now planned is a police action that will not stop the war. It will continue hopefully without the use of gas. What should be done now is to bring the international community together in the UNSC to make an unanimous condemnation of every use of chemical weapons and then maybe go ahead through the members of the Security Council, Russia and others, to put pressure on all parties in the conflict to sit down and negotiate at a table to end the war. The Russians are not lacking influence. Saudi Arabia, who are supplying the rebels with money. also could put pressure for an armistice.” Answering the question whether Russia would take part in such a proposal, Blix said: “I think there are good prospects to get support from Russia and China, and also Iran on a condemnation of of the use of chemical agents. Maybe they would not point at Assad, if not the evidence is all too clearly presented on the table. No country has suffered from gas warfare than Iran in the war between Iraq an Iran. At that time the Western world hardly raised a finger against it.”
Answering what such would a statement not blaming the regime would mean, Blix said: “It would show a unity in the world, which now is not there when we are getting a deeper rift between USA and Russia and China and others. And that the world would see the U.S. continue the Bush policy to be a policeman of the World, not asking the UNSC at all. You have also to bring the process further than a condemnation as the intention must be to accomplish an armistice.” “The rebels could not continue without the deliveries of weapons and money from Saudi Arabia and Qatar. The government needs the support from Russia and Iran. so there means of pressure on the warring parties to put down the weapons.”
Answering the question why it is not enough with the U.S. claims of proof of government complicity for the use of CWs, Blix said: “I think that as you have made efforts to get a UN inspection in place and they have been in there once and are about to go back and make more investigations, decency demands that the report to the UNSC is delivered and you get to know what has happened and only after that make decisions. I am not skeptic over that there have been a use of gas and I am leaning to that it is done by the Assad regime, even if you cannot exclude the rebels. I am not skeptic about that. I am skeptic over the U.S., U.K. and France naming themselves as policemen of the world just like the Bush administration. It is more about the credibility of Obama than anything else. He happened to say that there was a red line for their use of CWs. It is this credibility he now defends. He wants to send a signal to Iran, for instance, saying that ‘we will not allow you to acquire nuclear weapons’. But this does not mean so much for the Iranians, if they do not want to to something about Syria.
Answering why there is such a hurry, Blix said: “Here we have is a medial and political dynamic rolling on. We know that the public opinion in the U.S. is not that enthusiastic for this. We know that it is not liked in Germany. Guido Westerwelle says that there must be discussions with the UN. The Italian Foreign Minister has also been skeptic.
It is England and French who have been rolling on, and naturally the American opposition. However, the Republicans might rather like see Obama do nothing, so they could blame him for being a paper tiger and an indecisive leader.
Regarding the military risks of an attack, Blix said that he thought neither Israel nor Russia would intervene militarily, but it would totally undermine discussions with Iran and deepen the rift towards Russia and China.
The interview in Swedish is at: http://sverigesradio.se/sida/gruppsida. … el=5628883
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