Syria conflict

French minister to visit Beijing over Syria

French foreign minister Laurent Fabius will visit Beijing on Sunday. Photo: AP

French foreign minister Laurent Fabius will visit China to discuss Syria on Sunday, his ministry said, amid ongoing diplomatic efforts to end the crisis in the war-torn country.

Friday, 13 September, 2013, 10:01am

Assad demands conditions for handing in weapons

US Secretary of State John Kerry (left), and UN Special Representative Lakhdar Brahimi (centre) listen to Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov make a statement to the press in Geneva on Friday. Photo: Reuters

US Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Friday the prospects for resuming the Syrian peace process are riding on the outcome of US-Russian talks aimed at securing Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal that lurched into a second day.

16 Sep 2013 - 6:13pm 1 comment

Wily Putin makes himself indispensable over Syria

Putin believes a military strike risks spreading the conflict far beyond Syria's borders, and would violate international law, undermining post-war stability. Photo: AFP

Russian President Vladimir Putin has been many things to US President Barack Obama: a partner, an irritant, host of the elusive Edward Snowden and "the bored kid in the back of the classroom" who offered so little on the administration's foreign policy goals that Obama cancelled plans to hold a summit meeting in Moscow last week.

13 Sep 2013 - 3:09am

Syria applies to join UN poison gas ban as Kerry, Lavrov meet

Syria's President Bashar al-Assad speaks in an interview in Damascus aired on Russian state television RU24. Photo: Reuters

Syria applied on Thursday to sign up to the global ban on chemical weapons, as US Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov discussed a Russian plan under which Damascus would give up its arsenal of poison gas.

13 Sep 2013 - 3:05am 1 comment

Russia, US work on deal to disarm Syria of chemical weapons

US Secretary of State John Kerry arrives for a meeting with Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov to discuss the Syrian conflict in Geneva, Switzerland, on Thursday. Photo: EPA

US Secretary of State John Kerry flew into Geneva on Thursday to hear Russia’s plans to disarm Syria of its chemical weapons and avert US-led military strikes, an initiative that has transformed diplomacy in the two-and-a-half year old civil war.

13 Sep 2013 - 2:38am 1 comment

Beijing cool on France’s UN draft on Syrian chemical arms

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's government has pledged to give up its arsenal of chemical weapons and sign the UN treaty banning chemical arms. Photo: AFP

China responded coolly yesterday to a French draft resolution at the UN Security Council to control Syria's chemical weapons, saying any decisions must be based on consensus and promote a peaceful resolution.

12 Sep 2013 - 2:24am

Russia hands Syria chemical weapons plan to US

Obama delivers a nationally televised address on Syria. Photo: AFP

Russian officials have given the United States a plan to put Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal under international control, ahead of a key meeting between Moscow and Washington’s top diplomats in Geneva, reports said on Wednesday.

12 Sep 2013 - 12:58am 8 comments

Disposal of Syria’s chemical weapons fraught with difficulties

A UN investigation team take samples from the ground in Zamalka, outside Damascus. Photo: AP

Russia's proposal to place Syria's chemical weapons under international control would be troublesome to enact given it would require time and total co-operation from a secretive regime fighting for survival.

11 Sep 2013 - 2:30am

How Kerry’s ‘off-the-cuff’ remark to Syria took off

John Kerry's unexpected offer was quickly backed. Photo: AFP

At first it seemed like just another of John Kerry's musings - Syria could stop threatened US military strikes by placing its chemical weapons stockpile under international control.

11 Sep 2013 - 2:10am

China backs Russian plan for Syria chemical weapons

China has backed a Russian plan to head off US air strikes on Syria by destroying the regime’s chemical weapons. Photo: AFP

China on Tuesday backed a Russian plan to head off threatened punitive US air strikes on Syria by destroying the regime’s chemical weapons.

10 Sep 2013 - 4:38pm

Syria agrees to hand over chemical weapons as France pushes UN ultimatum

In interviews, including with Chris Wallace of Fox News Sunday, US President Barack Obama said he was still pressing ahead with efforts to persuade Congress to authorise a military strike on Syria. Photo: Reuters

Momentum to avoid Western missile strikes on Syria intensified yesterday, as President Bashar al-Assad's regime accepted a plan to turn over its chemical weapons stockpile and France pitched a UN resolution to verify the disarmament.

11 Sep 2013 - 2:03am

Think thrice before striking Syria, China tells US and its allies

Wang Yi

China yesterday called on the US and other countries to "think thrice" before taking military action in Syria, while Syrian President Bashar al-Assad warned there would be "repercussions" against any US military strike.

10 Sep 2013 - 9:29am 1 comment

Hollande under fire from all sides for Syria stance

French President Francois Hollande faces the media. He is battling criticism for aligning with the US over plans to attack Syria. Photo: Reuters

A French satirical television show this week portrayed President Francois Hollande left holding US President Barack Obama's coat while the American leader and President Vladimir Putin of Russia hold private talks. Hollande gullibly concludes he is playing a key role.

10 Sep 2013 - 3:10am 1 comment

Russia calls on Syria to hand over chemical weapons

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Monday called on the Syrian regime to hand over its chemical weapons to avoid military action. Photo: AFP

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov called on Monday on the Syrian regime to hand over control of its chemical weapons arsenal to international supervision as a way of staving off the threat of military action.

10 Sep 2013 - 9:30am 3 comments

Obama officials step up lobbying of Congress members over Syria strike

Protesters hold placards across from the US Capitol in Washington during a demonstration against US military intervention in Syria. Photo: AFP

The US says the government of Syrian President Bassar al-Assad used chemical weapons in an attack on August 21 near Damascus that killed 1,429 people, including more than 400 children, and that a strong response was needed to deter the future use of deadly chemicals.

9 Sep 2013 - 7:22am 3 comments