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UN Security Council. Image: www.cfr.org.

High Hopes as UN Security Council Prepares to Vote on Fight Against ISIS

The bells of optimism are ringing in the halls of the UN as the Security Council (UNSC) members prepare to vote on action against ISIS.

Infamously divided, the UNSC appears to have found a common cause in the mission to “eradicate” the group who claimed responsibility for last week’s attacks in Paris and the downing of a Russian airliner on October 31st. With the alleged execution of a Chinese citizen, ISIS has now killed citizens from all five permanent member states.

French officials submitted a draft resolution to the group on Friday, which calls on all able members to “take all necessary measures, in compliance with international law, in particular international human rights, refugee and humanitarian law, on the territory under the control of Isil [ISIS] in Syria and Iraq, to redouble and co-ordinate their efforts to prevent and suppress terrorist acts committed specifically by Isil… and to eradicate the safe haven they have established in Iraq and Syria”.

It could be adopted as early as this weekend, marking a dramatic shift for the Security Council.

Until now, resolutions involving intervention in the affairs of sovereign states have been vetoed, typically by Russia or China.

Russia, which has been a staunch ally to Syria’s Assad regime, is expected to maintain this position; but with the recent attacks, it is unlikely that it will vote against any resolution condemning ISIS.

“One thing that was heard loud and clear in our discussions in the council is that there should be unity,” said Russia’s ambassador to the UN Vitaly Churkin. “I don’t see it as a huge gap.”

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