UN Secretary-General to look for other options to address Syrian crisis; India against military approach to resolve the crisis; ICC urges UNSC to ensure arrest of Sudanese leaders indicted for war crimes; Indian scientist re-elected to CLCS; UN: India’s g
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  • (JUNE 4-10)

    According to reports, the UN Security Council has requested UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to put forward a range of options for resolving the Syrian crisis. The Secretary-General in his remarks to the media said that the six-point plan will remain at the centre of efforts to resolve the crisis and that it is up to the Council to find a common voice on the issue. 1

    Meanwhile, in an informal plenary meeting of the UN General Assembly on the situation in Syria, India warned against the adoption of a military approach to resolve the crisis. India’s representative, H S Puri expressed apprehensions that growing militarization could wreck ‘havoc’ in the region and lead to a large-scale sectarian civil war. India also condemned all violence irrespective of who the perpetrators are. 2

    Meanwhile, the UN Security Council was urged by the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court to adopt measures to ensure the arrest of Sudanese leaders indicted for war crimes. He also added that the Sudanese government’s refusal to arrest President Omar Al-Bashir constitutes ‘a direct challenge to the Council’s authority’. He further added that the Council, at a future date could evaluate other possibilities including asking UN member states or regional organizations to execute arrest operations. 3

    In another development, eminent Indian scientist, Sivaramakrishnan Rajan was re-elected for a five-year term to the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS) that is tasked with facilitating implementation of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea. The election saw eight candidates from the Asia-Pacific group contesting for five seats. 4

    According to UN’s latest growth forecast for India in 2012, a 6.7 per cent growth was predicted as opposed to a 7.7 per cent rise predicted earlier this year. Owing to the challenging global economic situation, the UN said that the global growth will likely remain tepid in 2012. 5 Another UN report has forecast that India and China would account for more than half of transport-related emission worldwide by 2030, projected to increase by 57 per cent from the 2005 level. 6

    In other developments, according to reports, UNITAID, an agency of the UN that negotiated for cheap medicines from pharmaceutical manufacturers to treat deadly diseases is asking India to join its air ticket levy initiative under which a nominal amount on the cost of air tickets would fund UNITAID to buy drugs for patients in the developing world. It could prove to be a win-win situation for India as 80 per cent of the drugs bought by the agency are from Indian pharmaceutical firms and the aid would also cater to some Indian patients. 7