Egypt’s vote for a Russian draft U.N. Security Council resolution, calling for a ceasefire in the Syrian city of Aleppo but ignoring devastating bombing of the embattled city of Aleppo, has sparked an online backlash and wide condemnations.
There are about 275,000 people trapped by the siege of eastern Aleppo, where civilians are suffering through daily bombing, including by bunker-buster and incendiary weapons, and through starvation, as limited supplies run out and aid convoys are blocked from the city.
Egypt voted for two rival resolutions at the UN Security Council, one drafted by France and Spain, and the other by Russia
Russia vetoed a French-drafted U.N. Security Council resolution on Saturday that would have demanded an end to air strikes and military flights over Syria’s city of Aleppo.
Instead, Russia presented a counter-resolution, which omitted mention of aerial bombardment and failed to get enough votes.
Only Egypt, China, Venezuela and Russia voted for Moscow’s motion that failed to gather enough votes to pass.
The Egyptian vote was widely condemned.
Egypt, a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council, shrugged off the criticism.
“Egypt backs all efforts aimed at stopping the Syrian people’s tragedy. It voted for both resolutions based on their content, not political bidding that has become a hindrance to the Security Council’s work,” Egyptian Ambassador to the UN Amr Abul Atta said.
“Egypt voted for halting deliberate targeting of Syrian civilians, backing for humanitarian access and cessation of hostilities according to relevant Security Council resolutions,” Abul Atta added, according to the Egyptian official.
The Egyptian official blamed what he called “differences” among the Security Council’s permanent members for the body’s failure to take effective decisions on Syria.
The Saudi envoy to the UN, Abdullah al-Muallami, dubbed Egypt’s stance kowtowing to Russia on a UN resolution on Syria, and called it as “painful.”
“Stances by Senegal and Malaysia were much closer to the agreed Arab decision,” said Muallami, in comparison to the Arab League-member Egypt.
The envoy said it was a “farce” to see a decision vetoed by four members when it received a “strong” backing by 11 members of the Security Council.
“It is a dark day for the Syrian people,” he said. “But Syrians do not know darkness. They will win.”
Qatar too expressed disappointment over Egypt’s vote with Russia and said it will push ahead with plans to address the humanitarian situation on the ground in Syria.
“We were disappointed when Egypt voted for the Russian proposal,” Alya bint Ahmed bin Saif Al Thani, Qatar’s ambassador to the UN, told Al Jazeera on Saturday.
“It’s important now to focus on what we can do after the failure of the Security Council – this is the fifth veto by Russia concerning Syria.
“We will now work with the countries that are friends with the Syrian people to look at what the options are.”
Online backlash, Syrian people’s
The Arab activists on social media condemned the Egyptian vote for the Russian resolution, while Syrian people commented harshly.
Some said that the last fig leaf has fallen and the Egyptian regime has finally exposed itself, especially for its allies.
“Al-Sisi and his regime have no ally but their interests, they voted for Russia and sought its satisfaction, and forget the gulf states that supported their rule for long,” said a Saudi man on twitter.
“I hope that our governments learn the lesson and stop supporting this regime, he forgets everything and voted against our common goals,” another Saudi man said.
“Al-Sisi only follows who pays more, it seems that Russian promised him of more than the gulf states gave him,” an Egyptian tweet said.
“Al-Sisi didn’t just betray his president and country, but also betrayed the billions that gulf states sent to strengthen his role.”
The Syrian people didn’t find the Egyptian move strange, as the one who betrays one can do it again and again.
“What do you expect of the man who broke his oath, betrayed his legitimate president, killed thousands and sent more to prisons? The criminals always support each other,” a Syrian man said.
“The Egyptian regime accepted some days ago huge cargo of Russian wheat that was previously refused for health and poison reasons, do you expect the ones who don’t care for their own people to care for the Syrians?,” A Syrian doctor said.
“Indeed Egypt’s voting for the both resolutions reflect its distractions, they are trying anything to be noticed and to draw attention to them after losing all their strength on the regional issues,” Hussam, A Syrian lawyer said.
“The Sisi regime that committed brutal crimes will not stand against another criminal regime for sure. We lost trust in these tyrants long ago, these are normal news for us,” another Syrian man said.
“The last fig leaf has fallen and al-Sisi exposed all his cards. After betraying his own people, al-Sisi regime betrays the Syrians and stand by the killer’s side. How can anyone talk after this about the Arab’s unity and shared responsibilities?,” Khaled, a Syrian college student added.
“While the Arab states are standing powerless, Syria is being burnt under their eyes, Iran is expanding in the area and threatening their thrones, and finally their (loyal agents) are betraying them and following the winning side. Can their situation get any worse?” A Syria journalist, who preferred not to mention his name, finalized.