UN Security Council Likely to Condemn Syria Crackdown

At least 10 members of UNSC support Arab League initiative condemning Assad regime for systematic violence against the anti-government activists.

A French official says that the Arab League text of a new Security Council resolution on Syria has support from at least 10 members, meaning it can go up for a vote.

A text needs support from nine nations on the 15-member U.N. Security Council to go to a vote.

UN Security Council - AP - January 13, 2010

The Arab League wants the world body to pass a resolution condemning Syria for systematic violence against the country's population.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity in line with departmental rules.

The report comes hours after a senior member of the Syrian opposition said that the Syrian National Council had not received any formal invitation to attend talks with Syria's authorities in Russia, and would decline if one arrived.

Russia's Foreign Ministry said the Syrian authorities had agreed to talks in Russia, and that it hoped the opposition would agree.

"We have not received any offer like that officially and I think, if such an offer exists, it will be no more than an attempt to influence the [UN] Security Council. But I say clearly that our position has not changed and it is that there is no dialogue with [President Bashar Assad]," Abdel Baset Seda, a member of the Syrian council's executive committee, told Reuters.

He was speaking by telephone from New York, where he was following the Arab League's bid to win support from the Security Council for its Syria peace plan.