September 27, 3013
UNITED NATIONS — The inspectors responsible for tracking down Syria’s chemical arms stockpile and verifying its destruction plan to start work in Syria by Tuesday. They will face their tightest deadlines ever and work right in the heart of a war zone, according to a draft decision obtained Friday by The Associated Press.
The decision is the key to any U.N. resolution on Syria’s chemical weapons program.The five permanent members of the deeply divided U.N. Security Council reached agreement Thursday on a resolution to eliminate Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal, British and U.S. diplomats said, and the full council was set to discuss it Thursday night.
The agreement represents a major breakthrough in addressing the 2 ½-year conflict, which has killed more than 100,000 people.
Divisions among the permanent members have paralyzed council action on Syria since the conflict began.
U.N. diplomats said this resolution would be the first legally binding one on Syria in the conflict if adopted, which now appears virtually certain.
Britain’s U.N. ambassador, Mark Lyall Grant, tweeted that Britain, France, the U.S., Russia and China had agreed on a “binding and enforceable draft ... resolution.”
He said Britain would introduce the text to the 10 other council members Thursday night.