An advance team of UN observers visited Syria's western province of Homs to monitor a ceasefire brokered by UN-Arab league envoy, Kofi Annan.
Press TV has conducted an interview with freelance journalist Lizzie Phelan to further discuss the issue. The following is a transcription of the interview.
Press TV: On the outside, we see a ceasefire being implemented; but if there is a ceasefire, why are we still seeing sporadic clashes taking place? What's fueling the unrest behind the scenes?
Phelan: Very recently, the Syrian envoy to the United Nations has detailed that there has been 593 violations by the armed insurgence since April 12, the day of that ceasefire.
It’s really ironic that we have Susan Rice in the United Nations condemning the Syrian government, already calling the mission a failure. Of course, this is the mission that her country has waited for, and condemning the Syrian government for that failure, when those groups that her government is supporting are the ones that have committed more than 500 violations, the details of which have been provided to the General Secretary Ban Ki-Moon, Kofi Annan and the UN Security Council.
So, it’s very clear that even though the United States, Western powers and NATO powers are in a complete state of disarray about what to do over Syria. On the one hand they voted for this resolution there, there was of course a unanimous vote in the Security Council to send more observers into Syria, and at the same time they’re condemning it.
It’s very clear that they need an exit strategy from Syria. They still want, at the same time, to push ahead with their futile aims of regime change in Syria.
Press TV: We see the so-called ‘Friends of Syria’ conference saying it will pay the salaries of those who fight against the Assad government, and also we see the sending of arms to Syria. Some say the ceasefire is just a cover-up?
Phelan: Yeah, well absolutely. This is in complete violation of the plans of the resolution. Of course, it’s not the Syrian government that is violating the resolution or the ceasefire, but it’s the insurgence and the NATO powers that are violating the ceasefire.
Really, there needs to be a resolution brought about in the United Nations, and I’m sure that the Russians and the Chinese have tried to bring about a resolution in the United Nations to condemn the support for the insurgence inside Syria.
But of course, that would never gain the unanimous support required in the United Nations which, of course, in itself is a farce and shows how the United Nations is not a democratic organization because it defines consensus as a unanimous vote - which, of course, that is not a consensus and disallows, as we have seen indicated, the United States and other UN Security Council members to destroy the will of the international community by voting against resolutions which, for example, condemn Israel and support Cuba, etc.
Press TV: Until another resolution, perhaps, is drafted and ratified on the case of Syria, what is there that these UN forces could do in Syria, how much can they help?
Phelan: It’s very important to have independent observers on the ground because, on the one hand, we have the Western and NATO media giving their version of events. They have been proven time and time again of fabricated events on the ground in Syria.
On the other hand, you have the Syrian media, state-controlled [empire] that controls channels like Al-Donia, giving another version of events.
So it’s very important to have independent observers on the ground like with the Arab League observer mission.
Of course, if I was a gambling person, which I’m not, I’d put money on the fact that this observer mission will be objected and will vindicate, essentially, the analysis of the Syrian government that they are fighting against an armed insurgency supported by the Zionist entity and the Western powers.
[It’s] like with the Arab League observers which also vindicated that analysis and submitted their reports, to that effect. That was then rejected by, essentially, Qatar and Saudi Arabia in the Arab League.
I’m sure that if there is any genuine effort by the observers on the grounds in Syria then it will be derided by the likes of Susan Rice, the NATO powers, Israel, etc. And already we can see that happening. They’re already trying to write off the observer mission. I think that shows that the fact that they’re attacking it so much shows that it should be something that should be supported.