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Onsdag den 11. september 2013 - Strasbourg Revideret udgave

9. Situationen i Syrien (forhandling)
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  Der Präsident. − Als nächster Punkt der Tagesordnung folgt die Aussprache über die Erklärung der Vizepräsidentin der Kommission / Hohen Vertreterin der Union für Außen- und Sicherheitspolitik zur Lage in Syrien (2013/2819(RSP)).

 
  
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  Catherine Ashton, Vice-President of the Commission/High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy. − Mr President, I would like to thank honourable Members very much for the slightly earlier start for this debate.

On 21 August 2013 we saw chemical weapons used to kill hundreds of people in Syria. This is a war crime, a crime against humanity, and it runs contrary to all the values of the international community. We have had extensive discussions, both within the Ministers’ meeting in Vilnius where we were joined by both Elmar Brok in his capacity as Chair of the Committee on Foreign Affairs – and I thank him for his attendance – and by Secretary Kerry, who came to an extraordinary part of the meeting to talk with us about Syria and about events in the region. We agreed there and then that a strong international response was needed in the face of this crime and that we have to prevent impunity and prevent creating a horrific precedent for the use of chemical weapons.

Of course we are now paying great attention to the developments that are following, hour by hour, with the Russian proposal built on the words of Secretary Kerry and obviously discussions that took place in St Petersburg, namely to put Syria’s chemical weapons under international surveillance. But I will come back to that, if I may, in a moment. Because I also think that we need to remember the broader picture of what is happening in Syria.

In these past weeks we have witnessed yet another round of spiralling violence in the country. The regime has stepped up its military campaign against the opposition-held areas, sometimes taking recourse to indiscriminate shelling of entire neighbourhoods.

We have seen deeply disturbing reports of increased violence along confessional and ethnic lines. There were attacks against the Alawi population at the hands of extremist rebel groups, followed by a harsh response from the regime. Some Christian communities have been targeted recently. In the north-east, intensive fighting involving the Syrian Kurds lasted for weeks and resulted in increased refugee flows to Iraq.

I want to commend the UN investigation mission for engaging in their field inquiry into the attack of 21 August with courage and speed in what was very obviously an extremely difficult security situation. It is now of the utmost importance that they complete their report as soon as possible and that the work going on in laboratories in Sweden, Finland and elsewhere gives us the information, confirmed through these reports, that is already established through other reports that many Member States and international partners have been engaged in.

We have seen that there is assessment coming forward that only the regime possesses chemical agents and the means of their delivery in sufficient quantity to have carried out the attack on 21 August. It is really important that we recognise that information as well. The conclusion that so many have already reached is that therefore the regime was behind the attack and they have given support to an international response by force, given what is happening in terms of the blockage of the Security Council.

We have consistently emphasised the need for the efforts in the Security Council to come to fruition, to try to effectively end this conflict. I say again that the role of the Security Council is crucial and irreplaceable but it does rely on the members of the Security Council assuming their responsibilities. It is deeply regrettable that they have not yet shouldered that responsibility with regard to this conflict.

Internationally we work with all partners – the United States, Russia, the UN and many Arab nations – to achieve a united international response in the light of the developments that we see taking place in Syria now.

I have already referred to the meeting in Vilnius, where we found a common language from all EU-28 Member States. Some had already signed up to the language of the G20 and some might argue that our language is not quite the same, but I think we formulated a substantial EU position: condemnation of the chemical attack; recognition of the evidence of the regime’s responsibility; the necessity for the international community to respond and a strong call to the Security Council to fulfil its responsibilities; the emphasis which has been placed consistently by all that I have spoken to on a political solution and support for what has become known as the Geneva II initiative; and our commitment to providing aid on a continuing basis now and into the future.

Let me say a little more about recent developments which, as I say, are continuing hour by hour to be developed. Russia has proposed putting the Syrian chemical weapons arsenal under international control and destroying it eventually. We see that the Syrian Foreign Minister, Mr Muallem, when he was in Moscow, welcomed the proposal. The Secretary-General is urging the Security Council along these lines. Support is coming from many different directions.

I think it is very important to take this momentum and to use it because what we are seeing, for the first time in a long time, is the international community uniting towards an action on Syria. But as honourable Members will be the first to say, we need to approach this with care and examine the developments in detail. First of all, we need to ensure that the Syrian regime not only says it will agree to international action, but it must do so quickly, fully and without conditions, follow up with transparency and make sure that it adheres to all the requirements. In other words, it needs to be a different response from the response we have had in the past – broken promises and obstacles put in the way of international efforts.

We have discussed many times the fact that ultimately there has to be a political solution that can deliver the Syrian people from this traumatic experience, from the suffering and the ruin of the country and of the people and the total disregard we see so often for human rights. It is extremely important that the plight of the refugees is not ignored and that we continue to find not only ways of putting more resources at the disposal of the refugee population but of finding better, smarter and quicker ways to provide the resources that are needed, especially for the people who are suffering inside the country. Those honourable Members who have talked on this subject with the UN, our Commissioner Georgieva or the people who are going into Syria on a regular basis will know just how complex it is to try to move support – medical aid and supplies, food and so on – across parts of the country, many of which are held by different groups in a very difficult situation. We of course continue, by the way, to send in missions on a regular basis to Syria.

The latest development, therefore, that we have is an opportunity to reinvigorate, not just trying to sort out the chemical weapons issue but the broader political dimension. I hope that we will seize the opportunity to try to urge all to do this. We know that tomorrow Secretary Kerry will meet with Minister Lavrov in Geneva to try to work out exactly what this initiative might mean and to go into the detail of what would have to happen when, how and by whom. We put the EU at the disposal of the work that is ongoing in order to see how we can contribute – not if, but how.

It is also important to try to move ahead and get this peace process moving. Honourable Members will no doubt, in the course of your deliberations, argue that the threat of strikes has been the most important element in bringing the initiative to the table that can try to tackle chemical weapons. Whatever your view, the reality is that this is a moment to try to pull towards the process that is so necessary to find a political solution. We need to engage with all partners, as we are doing, to find ways to achieve that. We will continue to work to that end.

I have also mentioned the ongoing humanitarian disaster. We have already provided EUR 1.3 billion between the institutions of the European Union and Member States, but honourable Members will know too that the UN estimates that much more will be needed. We need to prepare for the end of this conflict too and the rebuilding of a nation which many figures say is 70% or so destroyed, not to mention the lives of people that have been destroyed, people who have been killed, children who have been orphaned and people who have been badly injured and maimed. A huge amount will need to be done.

We have to reaffirm our commitment to the people of Syria and to support them in every way possible through our humanitarian aid and in a political process that can try to bring peace. We have to do that by being prepared to work out on the ground how that can happen, place by place as well as across the whole nation, being able and willing to support the moves to get rid of the chemical weapons and being prepared to work with our international partners in a process that can make the Security Council do its work but also ensure that we respond to the challenge as well.

I hope the resolution that you will put forward will be able to help and support the work that is ongoing by the European Union to do that and I thank you for it.

 
  
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  José Ignacio Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra, en nombre del Grupo PPE. – Señor Presidente, señora Alta Representante, Señorías, la crisis siria pone de manifiesto, por un lado, la insuficiencia de la acción exterior de la Unión Europea, a pesar del Tratado de Lisboa, a pesar de sus esfuerzos, señora Ashton, y a pesar de las conclusiones positivas del Consejo informal de Ministros de Asuntos Exteriores de Vilna del fin de semana pasado, y también pone de manifiesto, de una forma dramática, la inoperancia de las Naciones Unidas que, ni en su composición, ni en sus órganos, ni en su funcionamiento, responden al espíritu fundacional de la Carta de San Francisco. Y todo ello se traduce en dos cosas: en que El Asad y sus aliados ganan —por lo menos de momento— y en que el pueblo sirio —miles de personas fallecidas, millones de personas desplazadas en una catástrofe humanitaria sin precedentes— pierde.

Parece que se abre ahora paso una iniciativa diplomática para tratar de someter al control internacional las armas químicas y proceder a su destrucción. Bienvenida sea, pero esto debe hacerse a través de una resolución urgente, obligatoria, y que, en caso de incumplimiento, debe dar paso a la aplicación del capítulo 7 de la Carta de las Naciones Unidas. Sin embargo, esta iniciativa deja flotando, señora Ashton, una pregunta en el ambiente, y es que si todos estos desarrollos en realidad van a permitir que el régimen sirio siga masacrando a su pueblo con armas convencionales, y si no deberíamos aprovechar esta resolución del Consejo de Seguridad para amparar la existencia de un corredor humanitario que alivie la tensión de la crisis humanitaria y proponer y favorecer la creación de una zona de exclusión aérea.

Estamos gastando, señora Ashton, ingentes cantidades de dinero en nuestra política mediterránea renovada y la situación en nuestra vecindad más próxima no puede ser más desoladora. Evidentemente, no depende solo de nosotros, pero creo que, con independencia de que se movilicen recursos importantes, como la ocasión lo requiere, por supuesto, tenemos que intentar hablar con una sola voz y, desde luego, señora Ashton, interesarnos por pesar más en este escenario político.

Termino ya, señor Presidente, preguntándole, señora Ashton, si puede hacer algo para evitar que las siete personas que han sido tomadas como rehenes en el campo de Ashraf, de las cuales seis son mujeres, sean torturadas y ejecutadas, como ha sucedido con anterioridad.

 
  
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  Hannes Swoboda, on behalf of the S&D Group. – Mr President, what do we know? We know that chemical weapons have been used; that is very clear. We have many documents, many conclusions showing that the Assad regime bears direct or at least indirect responsibility for this attack. I cannot imagine that this could have happened without the knowledge of Assad.

The international community must react to prevent any further use of chemical weapons. That is our right; it is our obligation. Furthermore, threats of military action have been made. There are many colleagues – and we have discussed this for a long time in our group – who have been for or against military action, but the threats are there and the threats have helped, something that we have to acknowledge, because Russia would not have moved without the threats and Assad would not have moved without the threats.

But now we have to act and we have to demand from Syria that it follows up promises and words with action. Syria has to sign up to the Chemicals Weapons Convention now. Syria has to hand over all chemical weapons – and I mean all chemical weapons – which have to be destroyed under UN control.

This of course is not the end of the affair. No, it is the beginning, and we need to hold the Geneva Conference we have planned for so long for a sincere dialogue. We have to challenge Russia, Syria, Iran and others also to come forward with some offers for peace and a political solution.

Finally, when speaking about many issues we very often forget the many refugees, the millions of refugees, and Europe and all our Member States have to do more. What we have done is not enough.

Finally, we have a lot of talk about military action. I do not want to go into detail, and as I said the threats have been helpful, but now it is time for peace, now we have to say – and this can be the big role for Europe – let us give peace a chance in Syria and in the Middle East.

 
  
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  Guy Verhofstadt, on behalf of the ALDE Group. – Mr President, this is my fourth or fifth debate with Baroness Ashton on Syria and, as you know, Baroness Ashton, I was asking two years ago for a bolder approach towards Syria and eventually to use force to end this tragedy there.

I continue along that line. The situation is getting worse and worse. We have two million refugees now; six million displaced people inside Syria; hundreds of thousands of people killed. And now we have the use of chemical weapons – and there is no doubt that it was the Assad regime that used them. The Human Rights Watch report which was published two days ago clearly indicates that only the Assad regime has the 330 millimetre rockets and the 140 millimetre artillery rockets which were used in the attack. Only them. Not the opposition. So there is no doubt and all this discussion on who did it is in fact something that is clear now. The question is now, what do we do?

What I am hearing is a one-track approach. We have to stop this use of chemical weapons – and this is true – and then the question is over. This afternoon I want to ask for and to say very clearly that we need a two-track approach. We need first of all to end the use of chemical weapons and therefore we have this possibility, maybe, of putting them under the control of the international community. But that is only possible if this is not a trap, if it is not what I would call delaying tactics: a way for the Assad regime to strengthen his army and gain a number of months again. I hope that we can be sure of that tomorrow when Kerry meets Lavrov.

I would be very pleased if you were to be there too, as the representative of the Europeans, that this would not only be a discussion between the Russians and the Americans. You have to be sure and that is what I am asking you: to have a clear indication already tomorrow if this is ‘yes’ or ‘no’, whether this proposal is serious, and whether it can be implemented on a short-term basis. If not, if it is not possible within a few days or weeks, then it is not serious; then it is really a way to hold us up.

The second thing is: do not forget the real problem in Syria. The tragedy, the ongoing tragedy. That is the second track. I am continuing to say to you and to the Europeans and to everybody, we need a no-fly zone. We know what we need. If Assad can continue to use his airplanes, his helicopters, his missiles and his airports, this slaughter of the Syrian population will simply continue. You know that this is also the best way to have a political deal. How do you expect him to make a political deal if there is no pressure behind it; if there is no stick behind it? Carrots needs sticks; certainly in diplomacy and in international politics!

I have the impression that the Americans are not even considering the second track at all for the moment: how to put pressure again on the Assad regime so that he can accept a political solution.

And I conclude with that: a political solution in my opinion, Baroness Ashton, is a solution without Assad and without the Assad family. Yes with the Alawite community, that is obvious naturally, but without Assad and the Assad family.

 
  
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  Ulrike Lunacek, im Namen der Verts/ALE-Fraktion. – Herr Präsident, Frau Ashton, meine Damen und Herren! Wir sind uns hier wohl alle einig – und das schon seit längerer Zeit –, dass dieses grausame Morden in Syrien endlich ein Ende haben muss und dass natürlich auch chemische Waffen nie wieder zum Einsatz kommen dürfen.

Wir haben auch in meiner Fraktion durchaus darüber Debatten geführt, welche Reaktion denn am wichtigsten ist. Wir sind uns alle einig, dass es einer starken geeinten Reaktion bedarf. Aber wir müssen uns die Frage stellen, ob denn ein Militärschlag – egal in welcher Form – tatsächlich auch das Ziel erreicht, wozu auch responsability to protect gehört, nämlich die Bevölkerung zu schützen. Und da habe ich und haben auch viele andere Zweifel.

Aber es gibt jetzt ein Zeitfenster und diese Entscheidung ist etwas in den Hintergrund gerückt – zum Glück. Ein Parlament, das Parlament in Großbritannien, in London, hat hier den ersten Schritt gemacht, um ein Zeitfenster zu öffnen, mit der seit 48 Stunden debattierten Möglichkeit, dass das syrische Regime bereit ist, mit Russland, mit Unterstützung der internationalen Gemeinschaft – auch Iran hat Ja dazu gesagt – diese chemischen Waffen unter Kontrolle zu bringen und zu vernichten. Jetzt ist tatsächlich die Möglichkeit einer diplomatischen politischen Lösung da. Aber Verzögerungstaktik darf das natürlich nicht sein. Das ist auch klar.

Notwendig ist es tatsächlich, ein Genf-II zu machen. Und ich plädiere dafür und auch wir Grünenplädieren dafür, dass hierbei auch der Iran als ein wichtiger regionaler Akteur miteinbezogen werden muss. Und ein zweiter Punkt: Ich bin froh, dass es gelungen ist, das in die gemeinsame Entschließung hineinzubekommen. Es gibt die Möglichkeit, wenn der Sicherheitsrat blockiert ist, dass die Generalversammlung das Heft in die Hand nimmt und die Frage debattiert und auch zu einer Entscheidung kommt, die eine gewisse völkerrechtliche Legitimation hat. Das ist notwendig, und ich finde, wenn der Sicherheitsrat blockiert bleibt, dann müssten wir diese Möglichkeit sehen.

Ein Letztes und ganz Wichtiges zu den Flüchtlingen: auch wenn es eine diplomatische Lösung gibt, das Leid der Flüchtlinge, der Millionen von Menschen – Frauen, Kinder und Männer, die bereits unter Druck sind, die verletzt wurden, die flüchten mussten – das wird mit einer politischen Lösung auch nicht gleich gelöst.

Die Europäische Union und die Mitgliedstaaten müssen mehr tun, um den Flüchtlingen zu helfen –auch vor Ort. Nur die Hälfte der 3,3 Mrd. Euro sind bisher ausgezahlt worden, und die Mitgliedstaaten müssen auch bereit sein, mehr Flüchtlinge aufzunehmen. Das ist notwendig! Sie dürfen nicht nur sagen: Die Nachbarstaaten müssen das tun, sondern: Auch wir tun das. Das ist der Auftrag, den auch die Europäische Union und die Mitgliedstaaten in diesen Zeiten haben – den Menschen zu helfen und sie zu schützen.

 
  
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  Charles Tannock, on behalf of the ECR Group. – Mr President, Madam High Representative, Syria remains the most pressing challenge to international peace and security, with more than 100 000 dead, 2 million refugees and now the alleged horrific use by the Assad regime of sarin gas on 21 August 2013. This violates customary international law under the 1925 Geneva Gas Protocol and rightly demands a robust response by the international community.

I too suggested a no-fly zone as the only way to deter further use of chemical weapons and force Assad back to the negotiating table, given that a limited surgical strike now is likely to hit mainly empty buildings.

The ECR Group welcomes the newest proposals on the table from President Obama to drop the US plan for a very effective military strike in exchange for the handover and destruction of Syrian weapons of mass destruction. The fact that Russia and Iran have readily accepted this suggestion and proposal is to me suggestive of an admission that their Ba’athist regime ally actually possesses chemical weapons, despite the fact that Assad’s regime attempted, right up to the last minute, to deny that they owned the things in the first place, and to deny the atrocious use of them against their own people.

This new diplomatic solution raises many challenges, not least those of verification and of trust in a totalitarian regime not known for acting in good faith, as well as the fact that they may try to conceal some of the chemical weapons stockpile. It does not, of course, solve the problem of war crimes which, clearly, have already been committed with impunity by both sides. Nor does it ensure a return to Geneva II or a political settlement in which Assad and his family depart and a new democratically elected government emerges. President Obama has made it clear that if this latest proposal fails he reserves the right to use the US military to act surgically and appropriately to deter future use of gas against civilians and also, of course, against troops in conflict everywhere, which would bring back the horrors and memories of the First World War.

Lastly, I deplore the cynical use to date by Russia and China of the UN Security Council in preventing a politically imposed solution to this terrible crisis.

 
  
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  Willy Meyer, en nombre del Grupo GUE/NGL. – Señor Presidente, señora Ashton, mi Grupo ―ya lo escuchó usted en Vilna, en la Conferencia Interparlamentaria de Seguridad― está en contra de la dramática guerra civil y en contra de cualquier tipo de intervención. Hay que apostar por una salida diplomática, política, en el marco regional y siempre bajo el paraguas de la Carta de las Naciones Unidas, no fuera de la Carta de las Naciones Unidas.

Mire usted, nosotros tenemos en la retina la comparecencia solemne, de febrero de 2003, del entonces Secretario de Estado, Colin Powell, en el Consejo de Seguridad y allí dio a conocer a la comunidad internacional las pruebas que, según los Estados Unidos, demostraban que Sadam Husein poseía armas de destrucción masiva. Igual que ahora, la misma Administración.

Nosotros y nosotras reclamamos una investigación imparcial, y tiene que ser por parte de las Naciones Unidas. Se ha producido un crimen ―el uso de armas químicas es un crimen de guerra―, pero no hay que descartar ninguna investigación: el que también Arabia Saudí haya podido suministrar a los rebeldes estas armas químicas.

Y, por eso, porque tenemos en la retina esa comparecencia, que produjo una guerra ilegal, e inmoral, no queremos que se vuelva a producir lo mismo, con los mismos servicios de inteligencia dando por buena información que se dio a conocer a nivel internacional.

Mire usted, una intervención en contra de la Carta de las Naciones Unidas es volver a la barbarie. Y si hay alguna zona en el mundo que tiene que reclamar el cumplimiento de la Carta de las Naciones Unidas es Europa ―Primera y Segunda Guerra Mundial―, y la Carta de las Naciones Unidas lo que quiere es evitar el uso de la fuerza y, finalmente, controlar las armas químicas, todas, no hay buenas y malas.

Que Europa lidere una convención internacional para poner fin a todas: la nuclear, la bacteriológica y la química.

(El orador acepta responder a una pregunta formulada con arreglo al procedimiento de la «tarjeta azul» (artículo 149, apartado 8, del Reglamento))

 
  
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  Alexander Graf Lambsdorff (ALDE), Frage nach dem Verfahren der „blauen Karte“. – Herr Präsident! Zwei kurze Dinge. Erstens: Lieber Herr Kollege, sind Sie bereit zur Kenntnis zu nehmen, dass Colin Powell nicht mehr Außenminister der Vereinigten Staaten von Amerika ist, sondern wir dort einen Regierungswechsel gehabt haben und es mit einer anderen amerikanischen Administration zu tun haben?

Zweite Frage: Sind Sie bereit, zur Kenntnis zu nehmen, dass Human Rights Watch bereits eine sehr detaillierte Untersuchung vorgelegt hat, die – genau wie die Hohe Vertreterin es gesagt hat – alles sehr deutlich macht – dass diese Attacke vom Regime ausging und dass es sich um Chemiewaffen handelt, mit anderen Worten, dass das Abwarten, das viel längere Warten, nicht sehr sinnvoll ist, sondern eindeutig nur die Linie Moskaus vertritt?

 
  
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  Willy Meyer (GUE/NGL), respuesta de «tarjeta azul». – Señor Presidente, usted no dará importancia a que un Secretario de Estado de los Estados Unidos compareciera en el máximo órgano del Consejo de Seguridad de las Naciones Unidas para demostrar a todo el mundo que había pruebas que incriminaban a Sadam Husein.

Es la misma Administración del mismo Estado; es verdad que es otro partido, pero es el mismo Estado, los mismos servicios de inteligencia, los mismos servicios que nos espían, a los europeos. ¡Oh, qué capacidad!

Y también hay que tener en cuenta a los periodistas que están allí, sobre el terreno. Ustedes no leen a los periodistas porque no les interesa, y hay periodistas, incluso periodistas de la BBC, que dicen que se han entrevistado con las víctimas, con las familias, y que estas han dicho: «nos entregaron unas sustancias químicas de parte de los servicios de inteligencia de Arabia Saudí».

Yo también puedo presentar muchas fotos.

 
  
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  Nigel Farage (EFD). - Mr President, I represent a group which is against military action in Syria. We are against it not because we are pacifists; we are against it not because we do not care about the awful things going on there. We are against it because we think there is some pretty poor thinking going on. The idea that somehow the rebels are the good guys and Assad’s regime are the bad guys really is an over-simplification of a situation in which we know that al-Qa’ida has significant representation amongst the rebel groups.

Of course, we have seen it all before: an endless series of military adventures over the course of the last 10 to 15 years. One such, in Afghanistan, is still going on and is not achieving any of the original aims. I was worried when I heard the Americans telling us, to begin with, that it was about punishing Assad and then, within a week, that it was about regime change – a position which I know the noble Baroness herself supports.

We think that firing a thousand cruise missiles is likely to make an unstable situation even worse than it is now.

In a sense, Baroness Ashton, you are sitting pretty because, as the highest-paid female politician in the world, luckily you have a non-job because the EU, thank goodness, has not yet got a foreign policy and, as a result of that, what we saw two weeks ago in the UK House of Commons was a nation-state democracy standing up and saying something. As a direct result of that vote in the House of Commons, we have not gone to war in Syria: we have entered a period of negotiations and Assad has a chance to prove to all of us whether he is a good man or a bad man.

I do not know how this will play out but at least, Mr Verhofstadt, there is a chance of peace, and I know that you represent the kind of political class who believe that global influence can be achieved only through bombing. Well, luckily – unlike extreme EU nationalists like yourself – British democracy has proved that nation-state parliaments can actually made people rethink. And, Mr President, I have to say, as somebody who has been here now for 14 years, it is ironic that the view which I used to represent was called extreme, but you can see who are the extreme militarists now.

(The speaker agreed to take a blue-card question under Rule 149(8))

 
  
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  Charles Tannock (ECR), blue-card question. – Mr Farage, you talked about the good guys and the bad guys. It is not about the good guys and the bad guys. You are well informed about the battlefields of the First World War: you take a great interest in that war and you remember the horrors of the use of gas. Would you not accept that a red line has been crossed by the Assad regime in using gas against its own people? And, if so, what should be done to stop other dictators and despots using it elsewhere; not just against civilians but in military conflicts? What would your response be to the use of weapons of mass destruction – to simply sit back and do nothing?

 
  
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  Nigel Farage (EFD), blue-card answer. – The ‘good guys versus bad guys’ story is really something I take from your own Foreign Secretary and party member William Hague, who was urging the international community to arm the rebels – which struck me, given that we know of al-Qa’ida’s involvement, as total and utter madness.

I will remain cynical and sceptical, like much of the European public, about who has used those weapons until we get the full report and we get the intelligence right. We went to war in Iraq being told that Saddam had weapons of …

(Interjection to Mr Verhofstadt, who had been shouting objections: ‘Why don’t you shut up and listen for a change? You really must be the vilest, rudest man in European politics and you rant on and the Chair lets you get away with it because you are the former Prime Minister of Belgium. Well, there we are.’)

So, Mr Tannock, I understand what you are saying. I understand that something ghastly has happened here, but before you take military action you need to be certain you are going to make things better and not worse.

(The speaker agreed to take a blue-card question under Rule 149(8))

 
  
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  Ioan Mircea Paşcu (S&D), blue-card question. – Mr Farage, I come from Romania and maybe live like a pig as you describe the Romanians living, but in this room, in this House, I think that we all have the same rights. I would therefore ask you whether, when you said that this is an opportunity for Assad to demonstrate whether he is a good man or a bad man, you think that the 100 000 people killed in Syria proves him to be a good man? I do not. Do you?

 
  
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  Nigel Farage (EFD), blue-card answer. – Sir, I would say this to you. I have never described the Romanians as living like pigs. What I said was that the Romanians treat their Roma minority like pigs. All right? So let us get that absolutely clear. You and your country discriminate against a large group of people in a way we have not seen in Europe since the 1930s. All right?

Now, look. I am not taking sides in this civil war. But I am saying this: that whether it is through the use of gas, or whether it is through the use of other forms of high explosives or bullets, there are terrible things happening in Syria – I understand that and I agree – but rushing to war as we did in Afghanistan, as we did in Iraq, was a mistake and Mr Cameron tried to bounce us into war and, thank goodness, the House of Commons has given us pause for thought. Surely that must be a good thing.

 
  
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  Bruno Gollnisch (NI). - Monsieur le Président, j'admire la foi extraordinaire de mes collègues Swoboda (S&D), Verhofstadt (ALDE), Tannock (ECR) ou autres dans les déclarations officielles, comme si, en effet, il n'y avait jamais eu de mensonge et de mensonge d'État; comme si le secrétaire d'État américain n'avait pas brandi au Conseil de sécurité des Nations unies une fiole de poudre de perlimpinpin, qu'il présentait comme le dernier avatar des armes de destruction massive de Saddam Hussein; comme si on ne nous avait pas menti dans l'affaire du Kosovo, en présentant les gentils Albanais comme victimes des méchants Serbes; comme si on n'avait pas menti dans l'affaire bosniaque, en nous racontant le bobard des 50 000 femmes bosniaques violées par les Serbes; comme si on ne nous avait pas menti dans l'affaire libyenne, en nous présentant les opposants à Kadhafi comme de valeureux démocrates...

Nous vivons dans le mensonge: mensonge de Bush, mensonge de Blair. Vous avez oublié tout cela? Vous croyez tout ce que l'on vous dit? Rappelez-vous l'adage latin: is fecit cui prodest, cherchez à qui le crime profite! Est-ce qu'il profite à Assad? Évidemment, non! Alors, vous devriez au moins avoir le doute qui, moi personnellement, m'a envahi depuis le début de cette affaire!

(Applaudissements)

 
  
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  Elmar Brok (PPE). - Herr Präsident, Frau Vizepräsidentin, verehrte Hohe Beauftragte, Kolleginnen und Kollegen! Ich möchte mich bei Ihnen bedanken, denn in Zeiten, in denen es nicht leicht ist, eine europäische Einigung in der Außenpolitik zu erzielen, ist es Ihnen gelungen, am Samstag in dieser schwierigen Frage eine breite Übereinstimmung der europäischen Außenminister zu finden. Und ich glaube, in diesem Prozess, noch eine politische Lösung zu erreichen, hat das eine große Rolle gespielt. Es ist dort auch erstmalig formuliert worden, dass der Sicherheitsrat sich noch einmal mit dem Bericht der Inspektoren beschäftigen muss. Dadurch ist eine Politisierung erreicht worden, und wir müssen das eine sagen: Waffen sind immer eine Niederlage von Politik. Aus diesem Grunde finde ich es wichtig, dass diese Ultimatumsfrage gekommen ist.

Chemiewaffen, ABC-Waffen dürfen niemals eingesetzt werden. Sie dürfen im Syrien-Konflikt nicht eingesetzt werden, und es muss den Diktatoren dieser Welt deutlich gemacht werden, dass sie auch anderswo nicht eingesetzt werden würden. Das geht über den Syrien-Konflikt hinaus. Wenn es gelingt, diese Waffen aus dem Verkehr zu ziehen, indem die internationale Gemeinschaft gemeinsam agiert und Russland endlich auch seine Verantwortung in dieser Frage wahrnimmt, wie es das bisher in der Syrien-Frage verweigert hat, dann ist das ein Weg, den wir suchen müssen, unter der Prämisse, wie Sie in Ihrer Rede gesagt haben, dass die Bedingungen voll erfüllt sein müssen, dass die Bedingungen vollständig und schnell durchgesetzt werden müssen und dass dies ohne Vorbehalte erfolgen muss. Ich finde es wichtig, dass daraus auch ein Druck entstehen sollte, Genf-II zustande zu bringen, um im Syrien-Konflikt selbst näher zu einer politischen Lösung zu kommen und die Dinge hier voranzutreiben.

Einen Satz noch: Wir sollten humanitäre Hilfe fördern. Dieses Haus sollte bereit sein, auch Gelder zur Verfügung zu stellen, damit den syrischen Flüchtlingen geholfen wird, sowie der UNO und unserer zuständigen Kommissarin zu helfen. Und Herr Farage: We shout each other now, we do not shoot each other now – that's Europe, and you have to learn that this is the great progress we have achieved in Europe.

(Der Redner ist damit einverstanden, eine Frage nach dem Verfahren der „blauen Karte“ gemäß Artikel 149 Absatz 8 der Geschäftsordnung zu beantworten.)

 
  
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  Bogusław Liberadzki (S&D), pytanie zadane przez podniesienie niebieskiej kartki. – Panie Przewodniczący! Gratuluję panu Brokowi, że zmienił tę debatę na korzyść. Panie Przewodniczący Brok, skoro wspomniał Pan o uchodźcach, czy nie należy wobec tego podjąć dialogu z krajami ościennymi, np. z Libanem, dotyczącego sytuacji tych uchodźców? Co możemy zrobić, żeby ich los był lepszy? Czy nie powinniśmy nawiązać takiego dialogu z powodów humanitarnych, aby mogło to stanowić nasz wkład w stabilizację sytuacji w regionie, albo też w zapobieżenie zaostrzeniu się konfliktu?

 
  
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  Elmar Brok (PPE), Antwort auf eine Frage nach dem Verfahren der „blauen Karte“. – Herr Kollege! Ich stimme Ihnen zu und glaube auch, dass die Europäische Union finanziell schon viel geleistet hat, aber es reicht nicht aus. Und das hat auch eine politische Dimension: Jordanien, die Türkei und Libanon sind auch dadurch politisch gefährdet. Es entsteht eine Destabilisierung mit unterschiedlicher Qualität in diesen Ländern. Deswegen ist es wichtig, hier diesen Ländern Hilfestellung zu leisten, damit sie mit dieser Belastung fertig werden, sowohl aus Gründen der politischen Stabilität in den Ländern als auch der humanitären Hilfe für die Flüchtlinge selbst. Wir in Europa müssen auch bereit sein, Menschen, die um ihr Leben rennen, bei uns eine Heimstatt für diese Zeit zu bieten. Deswegen müssen wir auch verstärkt überlegen, in welcher Weise wir Kriegsflüchtlinge im Rahmen der Asylverfahren betrachten. Hier scheint mir das manchmal zu kleinkariert zu sein. Hier geht es wirklich um einen europäischen Wert!

(Der Redner ist damit einverstanden, zwei Fragen nach dem Verfahren der „blauen Karte“ gemäß Artikel 149 Absatz 8 der Geschäftsordnung zu beantworten.)

 
  
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  Susy De Martini (ECR), Domanda "cartellino blu". – Signor Presidente, l'avevo già detto in sede di commissione affari esteri – quindi Elmar Brok ne è a conoscenza – ho una domanda da fare, che è poi la stessa di altri colleghi.

Sappiamo benissimo – come ha detto anche il giornalista italiano che era stato rapito in Siria – che le armi sono state usate dai ribelli, non dico solo dai ribelli, ma anche da questi. Sappiamo altrettanto bene che il capo degli ispettori ONU, Ake Sellstrom, è lo stesso che fu capo degli ispettori in Iraq. Vogliamo allora aspettarci un'azione equilibrata?

 
  
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  Jean-Luc Mélenchon (GUE/NGL), question "carton bleu". – Monsieur Brok, vous êtes un expert respecté dans notre assemblée. Vous avez dit que les armes chimiques ne devaient pas être employées et je pense qu'il n'y a pas une personne dans cet Hémicycle qui dira le contraire. L'interdiction des armes chimiques ne date cependant pas de 1925 – comme je le lis partout – mais de 1993, d'une convention qui a été signée dans mon pays. À cet égard, la Syrie n'a pas signé cette convention – et en on voit le résultat aujourd'hui – qui fait interdiction de posséder, de produire, et obligation de détruire les armes chimiques.

(Le Président interrompt l'orateur)

Il y a vingt ans que ces armes ne sont pas détruites. La Syrie ne l'a pas signée, l'Égypte ne l'a pas signée non plus, Israël l'a signée mais ne l'a pas ratifiée. Par conséquent, nous tenons ...

(Le Président retire la parole à l'orateur)

 
  
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  Elmar Brok (PPE), Antwort auf eine Frage nach dem Verfahren der „blauen Karte“. – Lassen Sie mich kurz antworten. Ja, natürlich wird diese Frage in der Berichterstattung manchmal nicht ausgewogen dargestellt, und man muss sich manchmal darüber ärgern, aber wir leben in einem Europa der freien Presse! Aber eines ist klar: Wir müssen auch in der Berichterstattung wie in unseren Erörterungen deutlich machen, dass wir Frieden nur mit politischen Mitteln stiften können, weil in diesem Fall eine militärische Drohung vorlag. Assad und Russland hätten niemals in diesen Friedensprozess eingewilligt. Auch dieser Zusammenhang muss in unseren Erörterungen deutlich werden. Dass das eine internationale Konvention ist, ist richtig, Herr Kollege! Und es gibt auch die internationale Rechtsbasis. Aber deswegen ist es ja umso mehr die Pflicht und das Recht der internationalen Gemeinschaft, die Vernichtung dieser Massenvernichtungswaffen in Syrien durchzusetzen.

 
  
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  Véronique De Keyser (S&D). - Monsieur le Président, en écoutant les premières interventions, j'ai presque eu l'impression que nous n'avions pas réussi à aboutir à une résolution commune sur la Syrie, qui – je crois – est une bonne résolution et qui montre qu'il y a, dans cet Hémicycle, un consensus sur des points très précis, à savoir les points centraux.

Un consensus, certainement, sur la question des armes chimiques, comme il y a eu un consensus au niveau international – sur lequel il faut insister et qui est un point positif –, y compris avec l'Iran et avec la Russie.

Le consensus est aussi la clé du second problème, que nous avons à peine abordé, à savoir celui de la guerre qui sévit aujourd'hui, en Irak, enfin je veux dire en Syrie – le lapsus est révélateur – et qui est une guerre civile pilotée par des acteurs extérieurs. Là encore, si nous ne parvenons pas à trouver un consensus politique qui relie les partis qui ont aujourd'hui explosé, y compris avec le parti Baas ainsi qu'avec des éléments qui ont siégé au gouvernement, il n'y aura pas de paix en Syrie.

Parfois, nous nous lançons dans des discours certes fondés sur notre conscience, nous oublions qu'en Espagne, il y a eu un compromis historique, que l'on ne sort pas intact d'une guerre civile et que, sinon, c'est la Syrie qui explosera en de multiples entités, avec les Kurdes de part et d'autre.

Je voudrais donc, comme nous l'avons voulu dans cette résolution, un ton mesuré par rapport à ceux qui se trouvent aujourd'hui, en Syrie, ou bien au gouvernement ou bien dans la rébellion, même si nous pensons qu'au sein de la rébellion également, il est fait usage de la torture, des massacres voire un "micro-usage" de certaines armes chimiques.

C'est sur cette base qu'il faudra faire la paix en Syrie, que nous le veuillons ou non. Je souhaite que le consensus sur les armes chimiques puisse rejaillir sur la scène politique et que nous trouvions – et il nous faut, à cet égard, raison garder – la possibilité de mettre aujourd'hui les belligérants autour de la table.

J'ajouterai enfin, en ce qui concerne les réfugiés, qu'ils sont aujourd'hui le troisième drame de cette Syrie. Nous l'avons dit: les pays limitrophes vont exploser si l'on continue. De grâce, que l'Europe ouvre davantage les bras! Certains pays l'ont fait, mais nous ne sommes pas parvenus à dégager, dans la résolution, une position commune de l'Europe à ce sujet. C'est l'autonomie que chaque pays en la matière qui a été évoquée.

 
  
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  Annemie Neyts-Uyttebroeck (ALDE). - Madame la Haute Représentante, Monsieur le Président, chers collègues, la succession des événements des dernières semaines est riche d'enseignements en tous genres. Ce n'est pas le moment de mener une analyse approfondie de tout ce qui a été fait, des innombrables erreurs qui ont été commises, des lacunes dans les analyses. J'espère néanmoins que nous le ferons et que nous en tirerons un jour les leçons. Les leçons que je voudrais en tirer aujourd'hui sont les suivantes.

Premièrement: quoique j'en pense, il faut reconnaître que la menace d'une intervention militaire a sans doute été l'élément déterminant qui a fait bouger un certain nombre d'acteurs dans une direction qui pourrait être décisive. Cela ne me réjouit pas mais c'est un fait. Il en découle également qu'il serait sans doute dangereux de lever cette menace militaire sans s'être assuré des garanties relatives à la possibilité qui a été ouverte aussi bien par la Syrie, par l'Iran que par la Russie.

Je vous engage donc, Madame la Haute Représentante, ainsi que tous les acteurs internationaux, à explorer cette piste avec toute la célérité, tout le dynamisme et toute la persévérance qui s'imposent car il s'agit là d'une voie inespérée.

Il faudra ensuite aller au-delà et essayer de trouver une solution politique. D'autres collègues ont indiqué avant moi dans quelle direction nous pourrons la trouver. Vous pouvez être certaine, Madame la Haute Représentante, que si vous la suivez, vous bénéficierez de notre soutien plein et entier.

 
  
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  Hélène Flautre (Verts/ALE). - Monsieur le Président, je comprends l'excitation et la virulence de certains collègues parce que la situation et les faits sont en train de leur donner tort.

Ils pensaient nous convaincre qu'il n'y avait pas d'armes de destruction massive, alors même que le régime syrien vient lui-même de l'admettre et est prêt, manifestement, dans ses déclarations, à reconnaître l'existence de ses stocks.

Ils voudraient nous faire croire qu'il n'y a pas de politique européenne, au moment même où celle-ci commence à apparaître sous nos yeux, à la fois à l'initiative de la France et de la Grande-Bretagne et sous la houlette de Mme Ashton, qui a décidé de doter la politique européenne d'une cohérence et d'une efficacité sur la scène internationale.

Ils voudraient aussi nous faire croire que l'intervention militaire serait dans tous les cas totalement illégitime et inopportune, au moment même où chacun comprend que c'est l'effectivité de la menace militaire qui a ouvert une nouvelle porte à la négociation et à la diplomatie.

Je crois qu'aujourd'hui, notre responsabilité, en tant qu'Européens, est celle que vous assumez – je vous en félicite, Madame Ashton – et celle que notre Parlement s'apprête à assumer, en votant l'excellente résolution de compromis qui a été négociée aujourd'hui – et je félicite les groupes qui l'ont rédigée. La responsabilité de jouer tout notre rôle sur l'échiquier international pour, non pas choisir entre l'option militaire et l'option politique – chacun sait bien qu'il n'y aura de solution que politique –, mais trouver tous les moyens, en articulant notre politique humanitaire, la menace militaire et notre stratégie diplomatique et politique.

C'est cette articulation qui peut aujourd'hui donner une source d'espérance pour voir enfin les horreurs en Syrie se terminer.

 
  
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  Mirosław Piotrowski (ECR). - Panie Przewodniczący! Użycie broni chemicznej w Syrii należy bezwzględnie potępić i sięgnąć po środki, które uniemożliwią powtórkę tej zbrodni. Nasuwa się jednak pytanie: jakich użyć do tego instrumentów? Czy odpowiedzią na śmierć ma być śmierć? Jak wyraził się niedawno papież Franciszek, wojna jest zawsze porażką dla ludzkości. Idąc tym torem rozumowania słuszne jest sięgnięcie po inne skuteczne środki jak np. objęcie międzynarodową kontrolą składów broni chemicznej w Syrii. Źle by się stało jednak, gdyby tego typu propozycje miały okazać się fałszywym alibi dla opóźnienia w czasie jakichkolwiek działań. Pomimo rzekomej wspólnej polityki bezpieczeństwa i obrony Unii Europejskiej tradycyjnie już w momentach zapalnych, tak jak w przypadku Syrii, Unia nie mówi jednym głosem. Anglia i Niemcy wykluczają interwencję zbrojną, a Francja ją poparła. Jakieś skuteczne działania musimy jednak podjąć.

 
  
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  Marisa Matias (GUE/NGL). - Senhor Presidente, o uso de armas químicas só pode receber por parte de todos nós o maior repúdio, mas isto não quer dizer que as soluções que tenham sido encontradas ou discutidas sejam as melhores. Como já foi referido, nós opomo-nos a qualquer intervenção militar externa. Não é uma questão de tempo, não é se é hoje se é amanhã, é uma opção que deve ser tomada e uma opção segura. A guerra não é opção. Não se pode sacrificar um povo e uma região inteira, e por isso a solução tem que ser diplomática, tem que ser política. Cem mil mortos, milhões de refugiados não podem ser figurantes em jogos geoestratégicos. A opção tem que ser dada ao povo sírio e a opção tem que ser a opção da democracia, de viverem com direitos e com paz. Não é escolher entre a peste ou a tragédia, porque isso não é opção nenhuma.

Nós não reconhecemos legitimidade a nenhum ator internacional relativamente à investigação do processo, a não ser às Nações Unidas. Não temos memória curta. Sabemos quantas vezes já fomos enganados. Queremos que sejam as Nações Unidas a conduzir o processo. E temos que nos opor, de uma vez por todas, à guerra civil. Há povo a sofrer, há povo dos dois lados.

A União Europeia pode fazer muita coisa. Pode apoiar os refugiados mais do que tem feito, pode apoiar a solução política ainda mais do que tem feito e pode liderar uma conferência internacional tendo em vista a proibição, destruição de armas químicas, nucleares e bacteriológicas. E, já agora, também seria interessante saber de que lado é que está o Sr. Hollande.

 
  
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  Fiorello Provera (EFD). - Signor Presidente, le infelici esperienze dell'Iraq, della primavera araba, dell'Egitto, ci insegnano che le conseguenze dei nostri interventi o dei nostri desideri vanno spesso in modo diverso rispetto alle aspettative. Nel condannare l'uso di armi chimiche da chiunque venga fatto, è altrettanto doveroso sottolineare che ci sono stati oltre centomila morti, con stupri e rapimenti, prima degli avvenimenti del 21 agosto, senza iniziative forti ed efficaci della comunità internazionale.

Soltanto adesso ci muoviamo. Un intervento militare non necessariamente farebbe vincere la democrazia e potrebbe invece consegnare il potere a un'opposizione priva di coesione politica, nella quale prevale la componente jihadista. Sarebbe assurdo fare una guerra per abbattere un tiranno e consegnare la Siria a un'instabilità perenne e forse all'estremismo di Al Qaeda. Dobbiamo percorrere quindi fino in fondo la strada della diplomazia che sembra aprirsi con le recenti proposte russe.

 
  
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  Mario Borghezio (NI). - Signor Presidente, il collega Provera ha perfettamente individuato il punto della questione. Per quanto mi riguarda, vorrei aggiungere che questi spaventosi venti di guerra – avrebbe potuto scoppiare una guerra mondiale con queste prospettive guerrafondaie – hanno trovato un ostacolo dapprima nella parola metapolitica, profetica, di Papa Francesco, e poi in una forte iniziativa diplomatica.

Recrimino che l'alto rappresentante dell'Unione europea abbia trovato solo due parole, dicasi due parole di numero, per ricordare il dramma della posizione dei cristiani in questo paese, perché è anche di queste gente che ci dobbiamo preoccupare.

Ci si preoccupa dei profughi, ma non me ne preoccupo perché sono sicuro che – e so che non sono ipocriti – i colleghi deputati che da anni parlano di solidarietà non avranno difficoltà ad accogliere almeno una o due famiglie di profughi siriani nelle proprie case, e non a spese dello Stato ma a spese proprie, considerato il loro stipendio di europarlamentari. La pace si costruisce coi fatti, non con l'ipocrisia o le inutili parole demagogiche dei partiti!

 
  
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  Arnaud Danjean (PPE). - Monsieur le Président, Madame la Haute représentante, l'indignation et l'émotion s'expriment depuis plus de deux ans dans cette Assemblée face à la tragédie syrienne. Elles ont légitimement gagné en intensité avec le massacre du 21 août. Mais l'indignation et l'émotion ne constituent pas une politique.

Depuis le 21 août, les postures martiales et trop souvent unilatérales ont semblé être la seule réponse au drame syrien. L'usage de la force ne doit pas être un tabou. L'option militaire peut être légitime, justifiée et efficace, mais elle doit toujours s'inscrire dans une stratégie diplomatique proposant in fine des solutions politiques à la guerre civile syrienne. Les frappes punitives promises par certains pays ne constituent pas une stratégie. C'est, au mieux, un pari, très risqué, dans une région sensible pour des gains dissuasifs et politiques très hypothétiques.

La voie diplomatique reste l'instrument à privilégier, tant pour sanctionner et dissuader un régime responsable d'une violation des conventions internationales que, surtout, pour trouver une issue au conflit. Or, une issue diplomatique nécessite, au-delà de l'émotion, de parler à tous les acteurs, notamment au niveau régional. Il faut, face à la complexité dramatique de la guerre civile en Syrie, choisir une approche réaliste, une démarche inclusive et des efforts intensifs.

(L'orateur accepte de répondre à une question "carton bleu" (article 149, paragraphe 8, du règlement))

 
  
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  Alexander Graf Lambsdorff (ALDE), question "carton bleu". – Monsieur le Président, cher collègue, sans la pression militaire des États-Unis, croyez-vous vraiment que nous discuterions aujourd'hui des options politiques ou d'une solution politique? Sans cette pression, nous n'aurions pas, à mon avis, vu le mouvement que l'on a observé de la part du régime syrien.

 
  
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  Arnaud Danjean (PPE), réponse "carton bleu". – Cher collègue, je suis tout à fait d'accord pour accepter le fait que l'option militaire, la menace militaire joue un rôle, un rôle de pression, un rôle dissuasif.

Ce que je conteste, c'est la stratégie qui s'attache à ce que nous avons appelé des frappes "punitives". Je ne sais pas ce que sont des frappes "punitives" efficaces, dans un contexte où nous n'avons pas de solution politique à proposer pour le jour d'après.

Nous ne sommes pas dans un laboratoire, nous sommes dans une région extrêmement sensible. Nous ne connaissons pas les conséquences que peuvent avoir des frappes que nous, nous appelons "punitives" et que d'autres, sur le terrain, appelleront "agressives".

 
  
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  Libor Rouček (S&D). - Mr President, there has been civil war in Syria for the last two years. As a result of that civil war we have 100 000 deaths, two million refugees outside of Syria, more than four million people who are internally displaced. On 21 August, chemical weapons were used. These are the three aspects we have to deal with. As regards the chemical weapons and their use, in my group we fully support the move by Baroness Ashton and the solution she has proposed. At the end, yes, Syria should place all its chemical weapons under international control and sign the international treaty.

As far as the civil war is concerned, I am also afraid there is no military solution to that conflict because this is not a case of the bad guy who is in power fighting freedom fighters of some kind: the Free Syrian Army, a united opposition. That is, unfortunately, not the case. We have to deal with hundreds of groups which are fighting Assad. Some of the groups do not share our values, to put it mildly. In other words yes, there have to be political and diplomatic solutions. As has been mentioned already, yes, all relevant actors should be involved, including the major players in the region, including Iran.

And as far as the refugees are concerned we should engage the international community, not only the EU but also our friends in the United States and our friends in the Arab countries.

 
  
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  Graham Watson (ALDE). - Mr President, I wish to congratulate the High Representative on such a strong statement from Vilnius on the basis of such a weak consensus among Member States. If any development shows how weak our Member States are on their own and how much we now need a common policy to regain influence in the world, it is our impotence in the face of Assad’s almost certain use of chemical weapons.

Almost one hundred years after the use of poison gas on our continent we have – rightly – UN Conventions to prohibit their use. Those conventions establish the basis for action. So yes, use the UN apparatus. Yes, encourage Russia to engage. Yes, keep up your efforts for Geneva II. But no, do not leave it at that. If those avenues fail, then act. Because otherwise it will happen again and again and again, and not only in Syria.

 
  
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  Judith Sargentini (Verts/ALE). - Het debat hier, in het Britse Lagerhuis, in het Amerikaans Congres over wat te doen met Syrië, al dan niet militair ingrijpen en wat daar de consequenties van zouden zijn, is oprecht. Het komt bij mij oprecht over. Het wordt met aandacht gevoerd. Afwegingen worden gemaakt, niemand heeft het definitieve antwoord. Ook in de kranten zie je dat.

Het debat echter over wat te doen met alle vluchtelingen uit Syrië en ín Syrië, vind ik minder oprecht in de Europese Unie. Vandaag komen de eerste honderd Syrische vluchtelingen aan in Duitsland. Dat is voor honderd mensen goed nieuws. Dat geldt voor Libanon en Jordanië en voor Turkije natuurlijk niet, maar voor honderd zielen is het goed nieuws. In Nederland wordt gestecheld over vijftig asielzoekers. Die zouden dan wel mogen komen, maar dat moet dan worden afgetrokken van het quotum dat wij elk jaar aan de UNHCR geven, dus minder asielzoekers uit Kenia. Ik denk dat wij één ding wel kunnen doen en dat is kwetsbare asielzoekers opvangen in de Europese Unie.

[De spreker gaat in op een "blauwe kaart"-vraag (artikel 149, lid 8 van het Reglement)]

 
  
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  Alexandra Thein (ALDE), Frage nach dem Verfahren der „blauen Karte“. – Sehr geehrte Frau Kollegin! Ist Ihnen bekannt, dass Deutschland zwar heute hundert zusätzliche Flüchtlinge aufnimmt, dass sich aber im Endeffekt in Deutschland schon 17 000 syrische Flüchtlingebefinden ? Es geht also heute nur um die, die außerhalb des normalen Flüchtlingsverfahrens aufgenommen werden und sofort eine Arbeitserlaubnis und eine Aufenthaltsgenehmigung bekommen. Im Übrigen haben wir zusammen mit Schweden mehr als die Hälfte der Flüchtlinge der gesamten EU-Länder aufgenommen.

 
  
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  Judith Sargentini (Verts/ALE), "blauwe kaart"-antwoord. – Mag ik mijn collega feliciteren met die geste? En dat geldt bijvoorbeeld ook voor een land als Zweden. Het is alleen een beetje pijnlijk om over aantallen te praten. Ik gebruikte dit voorbeeld ter illustratie van het probleem in mijn eigen land, dat zeer terughoudend is.

Ik blijf zeggen dat wij meer kunnen doen en ik wil u bijvoorbeeld wijzen op Griekenland, waar Syriërs nog steeds in de gevangenis terechtkomen. En wij helpen de Grieken niet om daar verlichting in te brengen. Dus mijn oproep blijft gelden en ik neem de correctie van mijn collega graag aan.

 
  
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  Geoffrey Van Orden (ECR). - Mr President, unusually – I must say – I find myself actually agreeing with much that Baroness Ashton had to say in her statement. It was modest, with no EU hubris, and no desperate search for some sort of EU role. The harsh fact is that dictators such as Bashir al-Assad only understand force and, as many colleagues have pointed out, it is only the threat of the use of force that has forced action and broken the political deadlock.

The Russian proposal clearly has some merit and some attraction, but we should be under no illusions: it was cooked up in Moscow between the Russian and Syrian foreign ministers. It has been effective in delaying military action by the US and her allies, and the danger is that Assad will merely continue to use a full range of weapons, short of WMD, to press home his military advantage. Yesterday, for example, Syrian government aircraft staged three raids over rebel-held areas of Damascus. The war goes on.

It seems to me that we need to press for an immediate ceasefire and for chemical weapons to be brought under international control. May I just say that the key issue is that agreements and international conventions have to be enforced, and therefore we need to give full support to the United States in her endeavours.

(The speaker agreed to take a blue-card question under Rule 149(8).)

 
  
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  Pino Arlacchi (S&D), blue-card question. – Mr Van Orden, you say – and I agree – that dictators only understand force or the threat of force. So, in the case of the other dictators left after Assad, what if instead of being discouraged by an attack they start doing exactly the opposite, and go into the nuclear game, if they have nuclear weapons, just as a way of being sure of not being attacked?

 
  
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  Geoffrey Van Orden (ECR), blue-card answer. – I do not resile at all from my statement. Quite clearly these people only understand the threat of force, and that threat of force has to be credible. The problem we seem to have at the moment is that there has been a threat and now we seem rather unsure about whether or not we can use it. That is the great problem.

We should be under no illusions that this is the only thing that people like Assad and other dictators will understand, and they have got to know that we mean it. That is why I say we have got to give all possible support to the United States because, after all, the United Nations has shown itself incapable of making sure that conventions and international agreements are properly implemented.

 
  
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  Bastiaan Belder (EFD). - Vanmorgen vroeg keek ik op mijn werkkamer in het parlement naar een video-opname van de begrafenis van drie jongemannen uit de historische Syrische bergstad Maaloula, pelgrimsoord voor christenen én moslims.

Volgens ooggetuigen in Maaloula zaaien jihadisten, let wel in meerderheid niet-Syriërs, dood en verderf. Inwoners van Maaloula krijgen de keuze tussen bekering tot de islam of onthoofding. Is de kwestie Maaloula en de situatie daar de Hoge Vertegenwoordiger eveneens bekend?

Wat mij evenzeer klemt is de houding van de Europese Unie en haar toetredingskandidaat Turkije tegenover 'religieuze zuiveringen' in Syrië, zeker wanneer bij zulke oorlogsmisdaden jihadisten uit ons eigen continent, Europa, direct betrokken blijken te zijn, zoals bijvoorbeeld begin augustus Duitse jihadisten.

Hoge Vertegenwoordiger, gaan Brussel en Ankara gewoon door met het steunen van rebellen ook al blijken die terroristen te zijn, die slechts één religie, de islam, in Syrië gedogen? Graag verneem ik uw stellingname over een dubbele Europese betrokkenheid én verantwoordelijkheid inzake Syrische smarten, Syrisch leed en Syrisch drama.

 
  
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  Nick Griffin (NI). - Mr President, having spoken in Damascus with many relatives of victims of the Islamist war on Syria, I hope that we all welcome the Russian proposal to put chemical weapons beyond use, without an escalation of the conflict.

We should do everything possible to help this diplomacy to succeed, because if it falters Obama, Hollande, Cameron and the other neo-con puppets will drag us into a conflict that is certain to spiral out of control.

Obama claims there will be no boots on the ground. That is a lie, because if the US bombs Syria into the clutches of al-Qa’ida, then Syria’s chemical weapon stockpile will end up in the hands not of the United Nations decommissioning teams, but of the heirs of Osama bin Laden.

American, British and European troops will then have to be sent in to try and secure those weapons, and our soldiers will die in Syria in order to stop children dying in Islamist poison gas attacks, not just in Damascus but in Paris, London and New York. That is why we should turn the Russian peace proposal into reality.

 
  
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  Jacek Protasiewicz (PPE). - Panie Przewodniczący! Pani Wysoka Przedstawiciel! Na konflikt syryjski, jakże dramatyczny, nie powinniśmy patrzeć wyłącznie przez pryzmat militarny ani też czysto polityczny. Pamiętajmy o dramacie zwykłych ludzi – ponad 100 tysięcy ofiar śmiertelnych tej wojny domowej i prawie 2 miliony, czyli 10% mieszkańców kraju, w roli uchodźców. To prawdziwy kryzys humanitarny.

Jak oblicza Organizacja Narodów Zjednoczonych konsekwencjami tej okrutnej i dramatycznej wojny domowej zostało bezpośrednio dotkniętych prawie 2 miliony dzieci.

Nie ulega wątpliwości, że użycie broni chemicznej nie może pozostać bez międzynarodowej reakcji, a winni powinni ponieść, prędzej czy później, odpowiedzialność. Jeśli jednak istnieje dzisiaj możliwość uniknięcia akcji zbrojnej i zneutralizowania arsenału chemicznego, powinniśmy z tej możliwości skorzystać. Ale presja międzynarodowa, łącznie z groźbą interwencji wojskowej, musi zostać utrzymana. Dlatego powinniśmy wspierać naszych amerykańskich sojuszników w tym postanowieniu. Jednak najważniejsza jest dla nas pomoc humanitarna uchodźcom. Kwota 400 mln, którą oferował komisarz Füle w czerwcu, może nie być wystarczająca. Musimy być bardziej hojni.

 
  
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  Ana Gomes (S&D). - Senhor Presidente, a resolução que o Parlamento vai adotar amanhã envia uma mensagem inequívoca de que o uso de armas químicas e o massacre indiscriminado de civis não pode ser tolerado e ficar sem punição. Referir os criminosos ao Tribunal Penal Internacional é o mínimo, incluindo os fornecedores das armas químicas. O bárbaro ataque infligido sobre o povo de Guta é um crime contra a Humanidade e mais uma prova de que o regime de Assad não vacila em usar qualquer meio para se manter no poder.

Vai agora explorar-se a proposta de Moscovo. A Rússia devia há muito ter investido o seu peso e a sua relação com a Síria para fazer valer a responsabilidade da comunidade internacional de proteger o povo sírio contra um regime que o agredia e para pôr fim a um conflito que já fez 100 mil mortos, 2 milhões de refugiados e mais de 5 milhões de deslocados. Rússia e China ficam com o peso de bloquearem há dois anos a ação do Conselho de Segurança das Nações Unidas.

Não nos enganemos – o ultimato a Damasco tem agora de produzir efeitos. Caso contrário, será mesmo necessário outra ação ancorada nos princípios e valores da Carta das Nações Unidas, como afirmamos na resolução do Parlamento Europeu. Para forçar Assad a entregar… para destruir o arsenal químico, a parar de massacrar o seu povo e a negociar o fim do conflito. E não nos enganemos... Genebra II, para ter resultados, tem que chamar todos à mesa, incluindo as potências regionais, como o decisivo apoiante de Assad, o Irão. A comunidade internacional tem a obrigação moral de impedir Guta de se repetir na Síria ou em qualquer outra parte do mundo. Se o Conselho de Segurança está bloqueado, temos que ir à Assembleia Geral obter a legitimidade para a legitimação da ação que se impõe, e a União Europeia tem responsabilidade nisso.

Termino dizendo que não há só maus contra maus na Síria. Há um povo que se rebelou contra um regime que o oprime. É a proteção desse povo que tem que estar na mente da nossa ação.

 
  
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  Alexander Graf Lambsdorff (ALDE). - Herr Präsident, Baroness Ashton! Ich schließe mich den Glückwünschen an, die hier ausgesprochen worden sind. Sie haben es geschafft, die Europäische Union in einer Situation, die wirklich alles andere als einfach war, hinter einer Erklärung zu versammeln. Dafür gebührt Ihnen Respekt und Dankbarkeit.

Die Frage ist, was zu tun ist. Bundesaußenminister Westerwelle meint, es seien jetzt Taten nötig. Ich kann mich dem nur anschließen. Der Beitritt Syriens zur Chemiewaffen-Konvention, die Vorbereitung der Genf-II-Konferenz, und natürlich kann sich der Internationale Strafgerichtshof darauf einstellen, dass er demnächst vielleicht auch Arbeit bekommen wird, wenn die juristische Aufarbeitung dieses Verbrechens gegen die Menschlichkeit beginnt.

Was kann die Europäische Union tun? Ich glaube, eine Sache ist hier bereits angesprochen worden: Sie kann sich um die Flüchtlinge kümmern, neben all den politischen Prozessen, die wichtig sind.

Es wäre wirklich entscheidend und ein guter Impuls, wenn Europa, wenn die europäischen Institutionen eine europäische Flüchtlingskonferenz einberufen würden. Es kann nicht sein, dass einige Länder übermäßig belastet werden. Ich finde, wir sollten hier als Europäer solidarisch sein. Das ist keine Ausrede für Mitgliedstaaten, sich ihrer Verpflichtung zu entziehen, einzelne bereits aufzunehmen – wie mein Land das tut –, aber auf europäischer Ebene wäre das mit Sicherheit besser. Diese Initiative würde ich mir von Ihnen wünschen.

 
  
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  Barbara Lochbihler (Verts/ALE). - Herr Präsident, sehr geehrte Hohe Vertreterin! Auch ich begrüße den Vorschlag, dass Syrien seine Chemiewaffen unter internationale Kontrolle stellt. Die syrische Regierung ist aufgefordert, dies vorbehaltlos zu tun. Gleichwohl kann man damit den grausamen Giftgasangriff vom 21. August nicht ungeschehen machen.

Die EU und alle ihre Mitgliedstaaten müssen sich klar für eine Überweisung dieses Falls an den Internationalen Strafgerichtshof aussprechen. Es muss genau geklärt werden, wer die Verantwortlichkeit für dieses Kriegsverbrechen trägt, denn dafür darf es keine Straflosigkeit geben. Die EU sollte jetzt gleichfalls ihre Anstrengungen vervielfachen, einer Weiterverbreitung von Massenvernichtungswaffen entgegenzutreten. Dazu gehört insbesondere, sich für ein Verbot von abgereichertem Uran und weißem Phosphor einzusetzen, diesen besonders grausamen Waffen.

Das Drama der syrischen Flüchtlinge ist mehrfach angesprochen worden. Die Regierung von Schweden hat sich beispielhaft zur Aufnahme von syrischen Flüchtlingen bereiterklärt, ebenso Kommissarin Malmström. Die anderen Mitgliedstaaten müssen diesem Beispiel folgen und ihrer humanitären Verantwortung gerecht werden.

 
  
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  Nirj Deva (ECR). - Mr President, either we have a responsibility to protect, as defined in the United Nations in 2006 and subsequently, or we do not have a responsibility to protect and therefore we can allow people happily to kill one another while we watch.

For two years we have watched and there have been 2 million refugees, 6 million people displaced and 100 000 dead while we have been watching. Why did we watch? Because we knew that the Syrian opposition had al-Qa’ida embedded within it and we did not want al-Qa’ida to win. We let Arab kill Arab, moderate kill jihadi, Sunni kill Shia: it was none of our business.

But a red line was crossed with chemical weapons. We realised that the situation had gone beyond what we could control. Here I can congratulate Baroness Ashton on her very timely intervention to try to pull the rearing horses of the Apocalypse back.

However, we have to decide. Do we have a responsibility to protect, as the international community has said before, or do we not?

 
  
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  Gay Mitchell (PPE). - Mr President, I would like to make three quick points. First of all, I would like to thank Baroness Ashton and Commissioner Georgieva for the work they have done to date.

Secondly, I would like to say that there must be an inquiry. The international community must initiate a formal inquiry into what happened on 21 August in relation to chemical weapons which killed 1 400 people. Whatever else happens, that must be investigated. We must also ensure that the humanitarian aid that is required is provided and that we meet our part in that. I know that, to date, we have been doing that and in part meeting it from the neighbourhood instrument, which brings me to my third point.

Do we remember Srebrenica? Who was it sorted out the problem in Srebrenica? Here this is in our neighbourhood, being funded in part by our neighbourhood humanitarian aid facility, and we do not have the capacity to deal with it: we leave it to the Russians and the Americans. This is why the question of a common defence needs to be revisited. That may sound a strange thing coming from someone who represents a neutral country, but I have set my views out in a document called ‘Beyond neutrality’. We need to have that debate.

 
  
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  Μαρία-Ελένη Κοππά (S&D). - Κύριε Πρόεδρε, στις 21 Αυγούστου εξελίχθηκε μπροστά στα μάτια μας ένα έγκλημα κατά της ανθρωπότητας: η χρήση χημικών όπλων εναντίον άμαχου πληθυσμού, πράξη η οποία - από όπου και αν προέρχεται - συνιστά κατάφωρη παραβίαση του διεθνούς δικαίου. Η κρίση στη Συρία υπερβαίνει κατά πολύ το επίπεδο μιας τοπικής σύγκρουσης με διακύβευμα τη μεγαλύτερη αστάθεια σε μια ήδη ταραγμένη περιοχή όπως είναι η Μέση Ανατολή.

Υπάρχει ευθύνη της διεθνούς κοινότητας απέναντι σε όσα συμβαίνουν στη Συρία; Σίγουρα ναι. Όμως, πρώτον, δεν υπάρχουν σαφείς αποδείξεις για το ποιος έκανε την επίθεση. Δεύτερον, δεν υπάρχει καθαρός στρατιωτικός στόχος για μια ενδεχόμενη επέμβαση. Τρίτον, δεν υπάρχει καθαρός σύμμαχος για τις δυνάμεις που επιθυμούν να παρέμβουν. Η αντιπολίτευση είναι καταδιασπασμένη και σε αυτή έχει διεισδύσει η Αλ Κάιντα και άλλες εξτρεμιστικές ισλαμικές οργανώσεις. Τέταρτον, μια επέμβαση θα δημιουργήσει νέο κύμα προσφύγων που θα προστεθεί στα δύο εκατομμύρια που ήδη έχουν εγκαταλείψει τη χώρα. Και πέμπτον, δεν υπάρχει νομική βάση μια και δεν έχουμε ούτε απόφαση του Συμβουλίου Ασφαλείας ούτε καν περιφερειακού Οργανισμού.

Δεν είναι τυχαίο ότι η ευρωπαϊκή κοινή γνώμη είναι εναντίον μιας στρατιωτικής επίθεσης στη Συρία. Άρα εκείνο που πρέπει να προσπαθήσουμε με όλα τα μέσα είναι να προωθηθεί πολιτική λύση. Και η ρωσική πρωτοβουλία δίνει ακριβώς το έδαφος ώστε όλα τα ενδιαφερόμενα μέρη και τα μόνιμα μέλη του Συμβουλίου Ασφαλείας να εργασθούν για τη σύγκληση της Διάσκεψης της Γενεύης ΙΙ.

Παράλληλα με τη διπλωματική οδό πρέπει να υπάρξει διεθνής υποστήριξη για τους πρόσφυγες και τους εσωτερικά εκτοπισμένους. Η κατάσταση δεν είναι πια δραματική, είναι ανεξέλεγκτη και πρέπει να αναδειχθεί σε πρωτεύον ζήτημα. Άμεσα πρέπει να δημιουργηθούν ανθρωπιστικοί διάδρομοι.

Τέλος, σε ευρωπαϊκό επίπεδο, πρέπει να υπάρξει ένα σχέδιο κατανομής των Σύρων προσφύγων που έρχονται προς την Ευρώπη έτσι ώστε οι χώρες που βρίσκονται στα σύνορα της Ένωσης να μην είναι μόνες στη διαχείριση των μεταναστευτικών ροών.

 
  
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  Marietje Schaake (ALDE). - Mr President, we must welcome the opportunity to explore a UN-supported deal to end the use of chemical weapons by Assad, yet many major problems remain: a humanitarian disaster, the growth of terrorist and extremist militia, regional fragility and the risk of spillover and the malfunctioning of the UN Security Council to uphold agreed principles.

We cannot allow Assad to see meeting demands on chemical weapons as a licence to kill by other means. That has been the status quo for the past two and a half years. The war is not over and Syria has become the bloody theatre of major geopolitical power play. Let us not be naive. The EU ought to play a more prominent and strategic role, a leading role, by acting as a global player.

We can do more to end death and to defend the universal values the EU stands for. We cannot allow Russia and the United States to act over our heads while the EU is fragmented, weak, risks losing relevance and is incapable because we lack our own military capacity.

High Representative Ashton, I would like to ask you: what role for the EU in going forward? What are your plans on diplomacy? Are you intending to talk about Syria with Iran?

What can we do to avoid regional spillovers, specifically in Lebanon, for example by adding more troops to the UN mandate there?

What pressure can we apply? How can we uphold the responsibility to protect and reform the UN Security Council? These are some ideas in which the EU can take a much stronger lead.

 
  
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  Mark Demesmaeker (Verts/ALE). - Bijna honderd jaar geleden werden gifgaswapens voor het eerst op grote schaal ingezet in de Eerste Wereldoorlog. Dat was in Vlaanderen, mijn thuisland. De gruwel kende geen grenzen en vandaag zien wij hetzelfde gebeuren in Syrië.

De waarheid is: nog altijd hebben wij geen pasklaar antwoord op dergelijke barbarij, zeker niet in een uiterst ingewikkeld conflict als dat in Syrië. Dreigen met een strafinterventie? Wie dat doet moet goed weten dat hij vroeg of laat in de situatie komt dat hij die dreiging misschien ook zal moeten uitvoeren. Ik geloof niet dat dat het antwoord is. Er is geen internationaal mandaat voor ingrijpen, er is geen steun bij de publieke opinie, geen draagvlak. En wie militair tussenkomt, kiest ook partij. Dat moet hij goed weten! En ik weet niet of dat in dit geval, in dit conflict waar alle partijen de meest gruwelijke oorlogsmisdaden begaan, echt wel verstandig is.

Bovendien kan een ingrijpen een kettingreactie veroorzaken in de rest van de regio. Neen, diplomatie moet daarom op de eerste plaats komen. Het idee en het initiatief om de Syrische chemische wapens onder internationale controle te krijgen moet alle kansen krijgen.

 
  
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  Zbigniew Ziobro (EFD). - Panie Przewodniczący! Od dłuższego czasu usiłuje się nam przedstawić takie czarno-białe cliché oceny sytuacji w Syrii. Tymczasem sytuacja jest dużo bardziej skomplikowana. Na konflikt ten nakładają się przecież relacje i konflikty etniczne, a przede wszystkim religijne – między szyitami, alawitami, sunnitami, chrześcijanami – i wiemy, że ta prosta interpretacja, która zdaje się dyktować działania krajów Zachodu, Stanów Zjednoczonych czy Turcji, nie odpowiada rzeczywistości. Powinniśmy sobie zawsze zadać pytanie o stabilizację bądź destabilizację, która wynika z naszych posunięć. Otóż wydaje się, że dotychczasowe poczynania krajów Europy niestety sprzyjają destabilizacji. Potępiam, to, co robi Assad, ale pytam, czy to, co będzie po Assadzie, przyczyni się do większej stabilizacji czy destabilizacji, czy przyjdzie jeszcze większy tyran, czy będzie jeszcze większa anarchia? Wiemy de facto, że po drugiej stronie jest Al-Kaida, wiemy, że są organizacje, które mordują i nie zawahają się mordować dalej dla świętej wojny i państwa islamskiego, które chcą one wprowadzić w Syrii.

 
  
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  Alejo Vidal-Quadras (PPE). - Mr President, I would like to say to Baroness Ashton that she knows very well that under cover of the conflict in Syria that is concentrating the attention of Western governments and public opinion, the Iraqi Government has initiated the final phase of the physical liquidation of the 3 000 members of the Iranian democratic opposition that reside in Iraq.

In relation to this, Baroness Ashton, I ask you immediately to do the following. Tell Prime Minister Maliki that, if there is another murder or the seven hostages are not freed, this will have severe consequences at a diplomatic, financial and political level for him and we will take him to an international court to answer for these crimes. Organise, with the United Nations, blue helmet protection for Ashraf and call for an urgent meeting of foreign affairs ministers of the Union to accept refugees in their countries. Anything less than that is a waste of time.

 
  
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  Richard Howitt (S&D). - Mr President, the events of the last 24 hours mean that we are not debating the provenness of chemical weapons but the provenness of their disposal.

From Northern Ireland, in my own country, to what the European Union itself did in Indonesia, to what Germany and others are doing today in Libya, there is a wealth of international experience to verify decommissioning.

The credibility of the Russian offer will now depend on the validity of the decommissioning process. For me, that means it being undertaken within a United Nations framework and in the context of a UN resolution enabling the international community to coalesce towards ending all crimes against humanity and war crimes in Syria.

My party, Britain’s Labour Party, concluded that the British Prime Minister had failed to make the case for military action. Yes, of course, lessons had to be learned about Iraq, but this week’s events in Syria show the foolishness of prematurely ending the work of weapons inspectors when that work has just become very much more substantial.

The prospect of military action did not simply cause desperately-needed humanitarian workers to be removed from the country, but also alienated some in the MENA region and amongst the BRIC countries who are most needed to meet their pledges for humanitarian assistance.

Europe must lead the argument for the UN appeal to be met in full, using this month’s annual meeting of the UNHCR as a real opportunity to do so. Food will run out next month. The size of food parcels has already been made smaller. Our ambition should be to prevent chemical attacks but, at one and the same time, to secure peace.

 
  
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  Μαριέττα Γιαννάκου (PPE). - Κύριε Πρόεδρε, η σύγκρουση στη Συρία, την οποία παρακολουθούμε με φρίκη, δίνει και στις δύο πλευρές τη δυνατότητα να προβούν σε ενέργειες που είναι έξω από τα όρια. Δεν υπάρχει αμφιβολία ότι χρησιμοποιήθηκαν χημικά όπλα, αλλά στην περιοχή έχουν ξαναχρησιμοποιηθεί από το Ιράκ το 1988 στον πόλεμο εναντίον του Ιράν, γιατί τα χημικά όπλα είναι τελικά τα όπλα των φτωχών, όπως φαίνεται.

Τι θα κάνει η Ευρώπη και η πλευρά της δημοκρατίας; Κύριε Πρόεδρε, η Συρία δεν είναι Κόσσοβο, για να μπορεί να προγραμματισθεί επίθεση που θα παραμείνει στον αέρα και δεν θα εμπλακεί στο έδαφος σε μια τόσο μεγάλη χώρα, όπου η σύγκρουση είναι περίπλοκη και γίνεται συνεχώς όλο και πιο ανεξέλεγκτη. Πρέπει να επιλεγεί λοιπόν πολιτική λύση, πρέπει να επιλεγεί η οδός της πίεσης μεν για επίθεση, αλλά στην ουσία, της επιβολής της πολιτικής με τον ίδιο τρόπο που περιέγραψε η βαρόνη Ashton και κυρίως της αντιμετώπισης του ανθρωπιστικού προβλήματος.

 
  
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  Catherine Trautmann (S&D). - Monsieur le Président, Madame la Haute représentante, chers collègues, nous sommes tous d'accord pour rechercher une solution politique, mais je voudrais dire – après avoir écouté attentivement ce débat – que si la solution politique avait été possible avant, elle aurait été mise en œuvre. La dissuasion militaire a donc permis que l'on commence à revoir nos efforts.

Je vous remercie, Madame Ashton, d'avoir parlé d'une voix forte, à Vilnius, et d'avoir cherché à mobiliser, ensemble, tous les pays de l'Union européenne. Voilà un pas de franchi, vous l'avez encore exprimé aujourd'hui. Il faut, en effet, soutenir les efforts des États qui ont essayé d'obtenir du Conseil de sécurité, responsable du maintien de la paix et de la sécurité internationale, une réponse à la mesure de l'atrocité du crime commis, au moyen d'armes chimiques, un crime de trop, un crime contre l'humanité.

Nous devons, avec notre résolution, lancer un appel sans ambiguïté à une réaction forte et claire de la communauté internationale car, sans proposition politique, sans action diplomatique extrêmement claire et forte, nous n'obtiendrons pas de résultat. La guerre existait avant l'usage des armes chimiques, elle peut exister après.

Voilà pourquoi l'action de l'Union européenne est si déterminante pour forcer, aux Nations unies, un accord sur la résolution.

 
  
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  Ria Oomen-Ruijten (PPE). - Ik wil mij graag aansluiten bij de complimenten die aan mevrouw Ashton gegeven zijn om in deze moeilijke periode toch alle Europese landen op één rij te krijgen.

Als ik naar het debat van vandaag kijk dan herinner ik mij een bezoek in een van de vluchtelingenkampen waar een vluchteling mij zei: "Mevrouw, wanneer stopt de internationale gemeenschap this killing machine?" Er zijn op dit moment honderdduizend mensen vermoord, er zijn drie miljoen mensen op de vlucht. Wat doet de internationale gemeenschap? En hoe kijken mensen die op de vlucht zijn naar die internationale gemeenschap? Bieden wij ze wel hoop? Ik ben niet voor ingrijpen, ik zeg wel dat het diplomatieke plan alle kansen moet hebben. Daarvoor moet er dan ook een VN-resolutie komen, een VN-resolutie die ook iets doet aan controles en die ervoor zorgt dat, wanneer niet gedaan wordt wat afgesproken wordt, er ook ingegrepen kan worden.

 
  
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  Saïd El Khadraoui (S&D). - Het gebruik van chemische wapens in het Syrisch conflict is een nieuw triest hoogtepunt en verdient een krachtige veroordeling. Het krijgt terecht bijzonder veel aandacht en de druk die opgevoerd wordt, leidt hopelijk tot de overdracht aan de internationale gemeenschap en de vernietiging van deze verschrikkelijke wapens.

Maar wij mogen niet vergeten dat ondertussen dagelijks tientallen, waarschijnlijk honderden, doden vallen door conventionele wapens, ondertussen meer dan honderdduizend mensen. En dat er miljoenen vluchtelingen de grenzen zijn overgestoken en de buurlanden in zeer grote moeilijkheden brengen en daar ook nieuwe spanningen creëren. Wij moeten dus absoluut van het momentum gebruikmaken om een politieke oplossing te forceren, de partijen rond de tafel te krijgen. De Europese Unie moet daar echt een voortrekkersrol spelen en blijven spelen, omdat de enige manier om hier een eind aan te maken natuurlijk een diplomatieke, een politieke oplossing is.

Daarom gaan wij nu Rusland moeten overtuigen om daaraan mee te doen.

 
  
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  Eduard Kukan (PPE). - Použitie chemických zbraní proti civilnému obyvateľstvu je hranicou, ku ktorej by sa nemal priblížiť nijaký režim. Táto hranica bola v Sýrii prekročená, a tým došlo k spáchaniu zločinu proti ľudskosti.

To nemôže byť akceptované medzinárodným spoločenstvom a vyžaduje si rozhodnú odpoveď. Režim a ľudia zodpovední za použitie chemických zbraní musia niesť za tento čin zodpovednosť.

Dnes treba dospieť k zastaveniu eskalácie násilia a ďalšieho použitia chemických zbraní. Verím, že takéto riešenie bez potreby použitia vojenskej sily bude možné v najbližších dňoch nájsť a Únia prispeje k nájdeniu politického a diplomatického riešenia krízy.

Treba však vychádzať z reality, v ktorej sa nachádzame. Sýria sa stala ohniskom širšieho strategického konfliktu, ktorý má devastujúci dopad na celý región. Treba primäť najmä Rusko, aby aj ono pristúpilo – zodpovedne – k riešeniu súčasnej krízy.

 
  
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  Pier Antonio Panzeri (S&D). - Signor Presidente, mi rivolgo direttamente alla Baronessa Ashton, perché il minuto di tempo a mia disposizione non permette analisi sofisticate.

È stato detto che oggi siamo dinanzi a un fatto nuovo: la proposta russa, tutta da verificare, ma che può essere l'occasione per riaprire gli spazi di un negoziato. Tuttavia, se questo fatto nuovo, da un lato, sospende l'intervento militare, dall'altro, come lei sa, non risolve la guerra civile in corso. Per questo le chiedo se non sarebbe utile andare oltre le parole perché servono proposte e fatti concreti, ben oltre Vilnius.

Se vogliamo che l'iniziativa diplomatica abbia successo, non penso sia utile accompagnarla con la minaccia di azioni militari, piuttosto l'Unione europea dovrebbe impegnarsi in una forte iniziativa di rilancio perché il suo ruolo è quello di preparare le condizioni e non di fare il resoconto di quanto fatto da altri.

Le chiedo dunque di valutare la possibilità di chiedere agli Stati Uniti, alla Russia e alla Cina a costruire insieme una forza d'interposizione che cerchi di congelare l'attuale situazione sul campo e avviare nel contempo la conferenza di pace. Mi attendo da lei una maggiore consapevolezza del ruolo che l'Unione europea può davvero esercitare.

 
  
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  Krzysztof Lisek (PPE). - Panie Przewodniczący! Szanowna Pani Wysoka Przedstawiciel! Oczywiście chciałem się dołączyć do podziękowań za zaangażowanie służb Unii Europejskiej i Pani Wysokiej Przedstawiciel osobiście, ponieważ to bardzo ważne, że Unia Europejska podejmuje dzisiaj działanie. Jest mnóstwo ważnych rzeczy, które koleżanki i koledzy dzisiaj podkreślili, jest oczywiście ważne rozliczenie osób odpowiedzialnych za użycie broni chemicznej, jest ważne, co dalej będzie z Syrią. Lecz obecnie najważniejszą rzeczą jest oczywiście zatrzymanie tej potwornej wojny, która niesie tyle ofiar i której okrucieństwo, według raportu ONZ, dotyczy działań wojsk Assada i niestety również części rebeliantów. Dlatego myślę, że wszyscy na tej sali będziemy wspierać działania dyplomatyczne i powinniśmy je kontynuować. Rada Bezpieczeństwa jest dziś oczywiście tym miejscem, gdzie to się powinno stać, i jest to dobry test zarówno dla Rosji, jak i dla naszej woli i całej społeczności międzynarodowej.

 
  
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  María Muñiz De Urquiza (S&D). - Señor Presidente, mi partido es el partido de la legalidad internacional, así lo demostramos en la guerra ilegal de Irak, con protestas y tomando las decisiones que correspondían a la legalidad internacional.

Un crimen contra la humanidad no puede quedar sin respuesta, pero esta respuesta tiene que ser legal, y la legalidad pasa por las Naciones Unidas, que tienen resortes para soslayar los bloqueos eventuales del Consejo de Seguridad, y también pasa por que sean las Naciones Unidas las que acrediten quién ha utilizado armas químicas y si se han utilizado esas armas químicas. Tienen que ser las Naciones Unidas y no los servicios secretos de ningún país.

Señora Ashton, veinticuatro horas antes de que los 28 Estados miembros de la Unión Europea firmaran esa Resolución, o esa Declaración, de Vilna, cinco Estados miembros de la Unión Europea se reunieron y firmaron un documento distinto en el que afirmaban que apoyaban una eventual intervención militar y, textualmente, dijeron: «porque el mundo no puede estar pendiente de procesos interminables en las Naciones Unidas». ¡Cinco Estados miembros de la Unión Europea!

Señora Ashton, sigue fallando la coordinación de la Unión en la acción exterior más allá de la ayuda humanitaria; póngase a la cabeza de Ginebra II, haciendo valer el peso que debería tener la Unión Europea.

 
  
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  Ρόδη Κράτσα-Τσαγκαροπούλου (PPE). - Κύριε Πρόεδρε, το δράμα της Συρίας, συνώνυμο με την καταστροφή μιας χώρας και ενός λαού, βρίσκεται σε κομβικό σημείο. Για αυτό πρέπει να δράσουμε περισσότερο συντονισμένα και αποτελεσματικά ως διεθνής κοινότητα, τουλάχιστον ως Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση. Σήμερα διερωτώμεθα: είναι πειστική η πρόταση για την καταστροφή των χημικών όπλων του καθεστώτος Άσαντ και των συμμάχων; Απαιτείται μια δέσμευση του Συμβουλίου Ασφαλείας για τον έλεγχο και την καταστροφή τους. Είναι άμεσα εφαρμόσιμη αυτή η λύση; Ειδικοί μας λένε ότι θα χρειασθούν για τη διαδικασία τουλάχιστον δέκα χρόνια. Είναι αρκετή η πρόταση για να ανακοπεί η επιθετικότητα και η βία του καθεστώτος με άλλα μέσα; Τίποτα δεν μας πείθει για αυτό. Δύο πράγματα είναι σίγουρα. Πρώτον, ότι θα αναβαθμισθεί στη διπλωματική σκακιέρα το καθεστώς Άσαντ και, δεύτερον, ότι το δράμα του λαού θα συνεχισθεί.

Η Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση είναι η πιο βαρύνουσα χορηγός και σίγουρα θα συνεχίσει προς αυτήν την κατεύθυνση για τη βοήθεια του λαού μέσα στη Συρία αλλά και των προσφύγων. Πρέπει όμως να αναλάβει και μια πολιτική πρωτοβουλία για να διαδραματίσει βαρύνοντα ρόλο στην εξεύρεση μιας πολιτικά βιώσιμης λύσης.

 
  
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  Wolfgang Kreissl-Dörfler (S&D). - Herr Präsident, verehrte Kolleginnen und Kollegen! Zu begrüßen ist, dass Bewegung in die festgefahrene Situation in Syrien gekommen ist und auch Russland wieder bereit ist, sich an den Verhandlungen zu beteiligen, und hoffentlich auch seiner Verantwortung, den Krieg beenden zu helfen, endlich gerecht wird. Aber wie viel ist denn die Ankündigung Syriens tatsächlich wert, die Arsenale der chemischen Waffen und Kampfstoffe zu öffnen und diese vernichten zu lassen? Ohne einen Waffenstillstand scheint es überhaupt nicht realistisch zu sein. Zu gefährlich, äußerst schwierig, sagen ausgewiesene Experten für die Beseitigung dieser Kampfstoffe. Und wären Assad und seine Gegner, die sich ja schon untereinander bekriegen, dazu bereit? Diese Fragen gilt es zu beantworten, Frau Ashton. Und sollte es zu keiner Einigung kommen, wie sollte denn eine entschlossene Antwort auf den Giftgasangriff aussehen, und was will man damit erreichen? Bitte eine Antwort!

Der Krieg tobt unterdessen mit aller Härte weiter. Menschen sterben, werden verstümmelt, unbeschreibliches Leid wird verursacht. Aber es sind ja konventionelle Waffen, die zum Einsatz kommen, und die sind ja legitim! Die Kriegsparteien müssen endlich verhandeln, um dem Grauen ein Ende zu setzen. Hier muss der Druck aufgebaut werden. Militärisch wird keine Lösung zu erreichen sein!

 
  
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  Mariya Gabriel (PPE). - Monsieur le Président, Madame la Haute représentante, nous en sommes conscients, l'Union européenne a une carte à jouer dans ce conflit. Nous avons déjà prouvé notre engagement auprès des Syriens par l'aide humanitaire et notre engagement est un engagement à long terme. Il faut une solution politique complète qui ne détourne pas l'attention de ce qui s'est passé le 21 août.

L'Union européenne doit jouer sa carte diplomatique et rappeler à tous ceux qui envisagent des actions rapides ou ciblées qu'elles ne suffiront pas. Vous le faites, Madame Ashton, et je vous en félicite.

Deux autres choses. Premièrement, sur la mise des armes chimiques sous contrôle international, disposons-nous d'une liste fiable des armes en question et connaissons-nous leur localisation? Deuxièmement, sur le calendrier d'une telle action, comment pourrons-nous garantir la sécurité des experts internationaux en charge de cette mission dans un pays en guerre civile?

L'Union européenne devrait aussi envoyer des signaux aux États membres ainsi qu'à ses pays frontaliers. Elle devra assurer un accueil digne des réfugiés syriens. Je crois que l'Union sait se poser les bonnes questions, mais nous devons avoir le courage d'y apporter les bonnes réponses.

 
  
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  Salvatore Iacolino (PPE). - Signor Presidente, signora Ashton, la politica di difesa dell'Unione europea oggi è più che mai strettamente collegata alle politiche di sicurezza e di cooperazione nei confronti dei paesi terzi. Oggi potremmo forse in qualche misura affermare che il rischio di bombardamento appare scongiurato almeno per il momento, benché i fatti accaduti il 21 agosto integrino sicuramente l'ipotesi di un crimine nei confronti dell'umanità che come tale va condannato.

L'unica via rimane senz'altro quella della soluzione politica, del dialogo, salvaguardando sia i diritti dei civili in Siria così come quelli dei profughi – già 45.000 profughi siriani sono giunti in Europa e molti altri potrebbero arrivare, aumentando il già crescente numero di migrazioni esistenti in quell'area. Bisogna quindi sostenere col dialogo questa azione positiva, e nel contempo tutelare gli Stati membri del Sud dell'Europa esposti a questa pressione migratoria per sostenere i diritti civili dei profughi.

 
  
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  Der Präsident. − Meine lieben Kolleginnen und Kollegen! Nachdem wir nicht nur zeitlich verzögert sind, sondern die Frau Vizepräsidentin der Kommission um 17.15 Uhr den Raum verlassen muss, aber auch bei weiteren Tagesordnungspunkten noch Rede und Antwort stehen muss, und ich 16 Personen auf der Liste für das Catch-the-eye-Verfahren habe, bitte ich um Verständnis, dass ich auf acht reduziere, d. h. von jeder Fraktion, die gemeldet ist, kommt eine Person dran und von den größeren zwei, um, wir mir aufgetragen ist, die Mehrheitsverhältnisse zu berücksichtigen.

Catch-the-eye-Verfahren

 
  
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  Miroslav Mikolášik (PPE). - Chcel by som poukázať na niektoré vážne veci, ktoré v sýrskom konflikte sú: dva milióny utečencov, šesť miliónov vnútorne presídlených ľudí a hlavne 100 tisíc mŕtvych v tomto hroznom zápase, a nevidíme toho koniec. Terajšia opozícia, rebeli, ktorí bojujú proti vláde, nie sú zatiaľ žiadnou zárukou, že po prevzatí moci budú postupovať demokraticky, tak ako sa to stalo v Egypte.

Pozrite, podporovali sme opozíciu, nie že by to bývalo správne, ale vieme, čo urobili ako prvé. Začali prenasledovať kresťanov, ktorí tvoria 10 % obyvateľstva v tejto krajine. Takisto kresťania sú prvou akousi obeťou tohto medzimoslimského konfliktu.

Chcel by som ale pochváliť Úniu za to, že už teraz vynaložila 1,3 miliardy eur a bude ďalej pomáhať.

 
  
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  Liisa Jaakonsaari (S&D). - Arvoisa puhemies, nyt on ehdottomasti saatava tappaminen loppumaan ja pakolaissuunnitelma käyntiin ja uskon, että Euroopan unioni tekee tässä parhaansa.

Mutta sitten on paljon syvällisempääkin pohdittavaa: miten on mahdollista, että sotien jälkeen rakkaudella ja intohimolla rakennetut kansainväliset instituutiot kuten YK, turvallisuusneuvosto, Nato ja Euroopan unioni ovat niin kykenemättömiä ratkaisemaan kansainvälisiä vakavia kriisejä? Ja juuri tämän takia Yhdysvallat ovat tietyllä tavalla maailman poliisi. Minusta Yhdysvaltoja ei siitä pidä syyttää, koska muut ovat heikkoja. Sen takia pitää vielä edelleen vahvistaa Euroopan unionin mahdollisuuksia kriisin hallinnassa ja toiminnassa. Nyt täytyy todellakin tappaminen saada loppumaan.

 
  
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  Ivo Vajgl (ALDE). - Jaz bi tudi se pridružil vsem, ki so dali priznanje gospe Ashton za modro vodenje in uravnovešeno prezentiranje stališč Evropske unije, zlasti pa za poudarjanje prioritete politični rešitvi.

Vojno v Siriji smo pravzaprav podaljševali sami, zato ker nismo pravočasno razvili koncept neke politične rešitve, ki bi bila sprejemljiva za vse strani. Šele uporaba kemičnega orožja je sprožila grožnjo z vojaško intervencijo, rekel bi upravičeno grožnjo, dokler je v funkciji iskanja politične rešitve.

Mislim, da mora Evropska unija odigrati še naprej aktivno vlogo, uporabiti več znanja, ki ga imamo na razpolago, in mislim tudi, da bodo v vsaki politični rešitvi morali sodelovati vsi protagonisti vojne v Siriji.

 
  
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  Malika Benarab-Attou (Verts/ALE). - Monsieur le Président, Madame la Vice-présidente, je dis oui à un couloir humanitaire en Syrie maintenant, oui à un large accueil des réfugiés dans l'Union européenne. Je voudrais, cependant, rappeler l'opération "Plomb durci", menée par le régime israélien en 2009: des attaques contre les Palestiniens avec des bombes au phosphore et de l'uranium appauvri. Or, à ce jour, les responsables n'ont pas été sanctionnés, la justice n'a pas été rendue. Cette politique du "deux poids, deux mesures" nous décrédibilise nous, Européens, mais surtout les États-Unis et Israël, qui se gaussent d'être les porte-flambeaux de la démocratie et des droits internationaux.

J'attends de vous, Madame Ashton, que vous portiez avec force et conviction l'organisation, d'ici fin 2013, de la conférence, repoussée à maintes reprises, sur la création d'une zone au Proche-Orient exempte d'armes de destruction massive.

C'est la solution incontournable aux risques funestes – chimique, biologique, nucléaire –, d'où qu'ils viennent, de Syrie comme d'Israël. Puis-je compter sur vous, Madame Ashton, et sur les propos que vous avez tenus cet été?

 
  
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  Γεώργιος Τούσσας (GUE/NGL). - Κύριε Πρόεδρε, οι λαοί αντιδρούν στην ιμπεριαλιστική στρατιωτική επέμβαση των ΗΠΑ, κρατών μελών της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης και των συμμάχων τους κατά της Συρίας με αυξημένους κινδύνους για γενικευμένο πόλεμο στην ευρύτερη περιοχή.

Η Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση έχει μεγάλες ευθύνες γιατί επέβαλε οικονομικές και εμπορικές κυρώσεις στη Συρία, αναγνώρισε τους αντικαθεστωτικούς ως επίσημους συνομιλητές της και διευκόλυνε τον στρατιωτικό εξοπλισμό τους με την απόφαση του Συμβουλίου Υπουργών Εξωτερικών στις 28 Μάη του 2013, ανοίγοντας το δρόμο στρατιωτικής επέμβασης ενάντια στη Συρία.

Ποιος λαός μπορεί να αποδεχθεί ότι τα γεωπολιτικά συμφέροντα των Ηνωμένων Πολιτειών της Αμερικής, της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης και των μονοπωλίων για τον έλεγχο των πλουτοπαραγωγικών πηγών ενέργειας και των δρόμων μεταφοράς της, μπορούν να τους αναγορεύουν σε τιμητές της διεθνούς νομιμότητας; Οι λαοί δεν αποδέχονται την ιμπεριαλιστική στρατηγική των ΗΠΑ και των συμμάχων τους. Είναι αδιαπραγμάτευτο το δικαίωμα των λαών να καθορίζουν το μέλλον τους.

Κύριε Πρόεδρε, θα ήθελα να δείξετε λίγο κατανόηση για ορισμένα δευτερόλεπτα για ένα πολύ σοβαρό ζήτημα, που θα ήθελα να θέσω. Κύριε Πρόεδρε, θα ήθελα την κατανόησή σας. Η σκύλευση παιδιών…

(Ο Πρόεδρος αφαιρεί τον λόγο από τον ομιλητή.)

.

 
  
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  Andreas Mölzer (NI). - Herr Präsident! Dass nun im Konflikt um Syriens ABC-Waffen an einer gemeinsamen Lösung gearbeitet wird, mag zweifellos für uns alle eine große Erleichterung sein.

Zweifellos hätte ein Militärschlag gegen Syrien das Potenzial, einen Flächenbrand im Nahen Osten auszulösen. Moskau kann sich nun als internationaler Vermittler profilieren, und Friedensnobelpreisträger Obama, der ja kaum Unterstützung für seine Militärpläne bekommen hätte, kann das Gesicht wahren.

Die Idee mag also gut sein. Wenn das syrische Regime tatsächlich über jenes Chemiewaffenarsenal verfügt, von dem die Geheimdienste ausgehen, dann wird die Umsetzung in die Tat allerdings eine höchst problematische Geschichte werden.

Zum einen ist das Assad-Regime ja bekannt dafür, dass es Verzögerungstaktiken meisterlich einzusetzen vermag. Zum anderen ist das genaue Vorgehen ja noch ungeklärt. Tausend Tonnen Giftgas aus dem Kriegsgebiet zu schaffen oder diese vor Ort zu vernichten, wird zweifellos schwierig werden. Es braucht also klare und deutliche Bedingungen, wenn dieser Plan mehr sein soll, als bloß ein taktisches Scheinmanöver.

 
  
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  Eija-Riitta Korhola (PPE). - Arvoisa puhemies, moni on varmaankin kuullut Obaman viimeöisen puheen koskien Syyriaa. Obama on viisas, hän ei lähtenyt hätäilemään kohdennetun hyökkäyksen kanssa, ja hän on antanut diplomatialle toisen mahdollisuuden, kuten YK:n pääsihteeri asian ilmaisi. Toivoisin kansainväliseltä yhteisöltä järkevyyttä. Toivoisin, että emme tukisi sokeasti mitä tahansa oppositiota. Toivoisin, että antaisimme lisää resursseja heille, joiden aseena on kynä ja laki ja ihmisoikeudet.

Jo ennen Syyrian sisällissotaa kansalaisjärjestöt eivät saaneet toimia vapaasti. Bloggaajat ja kansalaisjärjestöaktiivit olivat ensimmäisten Assadin joukkojen pidättämien ja vangitsemien joukossa, kun levottomuudet alkoivat. Useimmat lähtivät maasta ja jatkavat nyt bloggaamista ja kansalaisyhteiskunnan mobilisointia niissä maissa, jotka heille ovat avanneet ovensa.

Nämä demokraattisin keinoin yhteiskuntaansa muuttavat ovat Syyrian tulevaisuuden kannalta elintärkeitä. Heidän tulisi vaikuttaa perustuslakiin ja poliittisten järjestelmien sisältöön, ei islamistitaistelijoiden, joiden demokraattiset arvot ovat kyseenalaiset. Minulla onkin pyyntö jäsenvaltioille: auttakaa syyrialaisia pakolaisia. Pyyntöni EU:lle on: auttakaa syyrialaisia.

 
  
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  Σοφοκλής Σοφοκλέους (S&D). - Κύριε Πρόεδρε, εκατό χιλιάδες νεκροί, δύο εκατομμύρια πρόσφυγες, η διπλωματία απέτυχε! Πού είδατε ενωμένη τη διεθνή κοινότητα; Η αλήθεια σκληρή: η Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση χωρίς ενιαία αποτελεσματική φωνή. Το Ευρωπαϊκό Κοινοβούλιο, η Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση δεν πρέπει να ανεχθούν πολεμική επέμβαση. Να δοθεί χρόνος στον χρόνο. Οι Ηνωμένες Πολιτείες δεν μπορούν να ζητούν αποκούμπι στην Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση. Ο πόλεμος θα είναι καταστροφικός για τη Συρία, τον αραβικό κόσμο. Θα έχουμε τρομοκρατικές ενέργειες στην Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση και στις Ηνωμένες Πολιτείες. Ο Άσαντ είναι δικτάτορας, όμως πρέπει να φύγει μόνο από τη διπλωματία και από τον συριακό λαό.

Τέλος, όσον αφορά τη χρήση χημικών: σίγουρα πρέπει να καταδικάσουμε τη χρήση τους, να απαιτήσουμε την καταστροφή τους. Πολλά αντικρουόμενα έχουν γραφτεί. Διερωτώμαι γιατί ακόμα δεν υπάρχει τεκμηριωμένη απάντηση από τους αρμοδίους. Αποφάσεις παίρνονται με αποδείξεις όχι με υπόνοιες και ενδείξεις όσο σοβαρές και αν είναι, από όπου και αν προέρχονται.

 
  
 

(Ende des Catch-the-eye-Verfahrens)

 
  
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  Catherine Ashton, Vice-President of the Commission/High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy. − Mr President, honourable Members, there is no question that the proposal which has been put forward to remove, destroy or put under observation the chemical weapons needs first of all to be verified, in the sense of ensuring that the Assad regime is determined that it will be implemented and, as honourable Members have said, that needs to be both in the meeting which will take place tomorrow and in our discussions: verified and ensured, in order that this is not a delaying tactic or anything other than an opportunity to help protect the people in Syria.

Secondly, it is important that the UN inspectors complete their work. Their report, we believe, will be available in the coming days, and that will be an opportunity for everyone to see what happened and for greater verification to take place about the event. It will be an important moment when that report is put before the UN Security Council. I have been talking with many countries, including Iran, on the issues of chemical weapons and of how we can move forward in a diplomatic process to a conference that will bring together all those who are able to stop the fighting and move forward to a resolution that can be peaceful.

The honourable Members have just had the debate that I have seen so many times in so many places about military action: the questions about humanitarian corridors and no-fly zones, and how to enforce and achieve that. I have to tell you that, in all the conversations with the military experts that I have spoken to in many countries, we know that this is not something which is passive but active, or something that could be done easily.

Most importantly, we do not see that this is going to be on the agenda any time soon, as it has not been on the agenda over these past two years. But I do not want any misinterpretation that says that not to have military action is somehow to be passive. There is a huge amount of work going on all the time: meetings with so many different groups from Syria, efforts being made to bring together the international community in a common position that can exert the kind of political pressure necessary to be able to bring people together in order to try and resolve this. The reason to do that, as so many honourable Members have said, is for the sake of the millions of Syrians who are suffering every single day – who see their lives shattered, their families destroyed, and their homes in ruins. That is why it is very difficult for anyone to imagine that a government that fails to be able to protect its people and indeed is complicit in murdering its people can continue.

This does not suggest that there are not challenges for the future about building a peace process that will allow all communities to be part of the future of Syria and to ensure that the values that originally brought the people out in demonstrations against the government two years ago must be the values upon which the new Syria rises from the ashes. Without that we will have failed the people of Syria, the vast majority of whom want this war to end and want to find a peaceful way forward and to live in the kind of free societies that we enjoy. This is also important when you think about the context of refugees.

Honourable Members have spoken about the need for Member States to think about their responsibilities. We think all the time about the two million people – which is a huge number of people – who are now outside their country. Frankly, the best way we can help them is to help them to be able to go home, and that means finding a way to end this war, to support the rebuilding of their country and to support the refugees. I am pleased and proud, that between us all, we are the biggest donor of humanitarian aid.

I do not honestly think anybody here disagrees that this is fundamentally important – but we need to do more. This becomes very obvious when you, like me, have visited the refugee camps and seen people’s plight and the importance of getting schools to function for children, and the real importance of ensuring that people have the opportunity to do things and to feel that they will have a future where they can engage, in their own country, in the political process.

It also means that we think about the misplaced people whose lives are miserable within the country and, again, who need to be helped and supported as much as possible. I have referred to the challenges of trying to get aid into the country: challenges that we have to face but which we have to overcome for their sake. Any process is going to have to be led and developed through the United Nations, but it is going to have to have within it the people who can bring this war to an end. That means it is about trying to put the right kind of programme together to build support from all the nations which have a stake in this and have a way in which they can ensure that peace comes and lasts.

We do play our part and we will play our part. This does not mean that I am naive about what that role is, but it does mean that it is an important one. It is important because day after day we get messages from so many countries, organisations and people to ask us to help to do the things that we do well and that we will commit to do.

Finally, honourable Members, I want to respond about Camp Ashraf, because Vice-President Vidal-Quadras and Mr Salafranca raised that, and it is very important. This morning I left the Chamber because I was talking to the Iraqi Foreign Minister about two issues: firstly, the importance of ensuring that people are protected properly; the inquiry into the terrible massacre that we saw on 1 September, in which 52 people died, is under way, but I have urged that it be a properly-conducted inquiry. Secondly, and just as importantly, the responsibility of the government to protect the people, and the seven people who are missing and who are being tracked down as we speak.

We have offered our support through the new representative to the United Nations, whom I have already met and indeed know well, but also of course to support the UN process in any way that we can.

 
  
  

IN THE CHAIR: EDWARD McMILLAN-SCOTT
Vice-President

 
  
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  President. − The debate is closed.

I have received seven motions for resolutions(1) tabled in accordance with Rule 110(2) of the Rules of Procedure.

The vote will take place on Thursday, 12 September 2013.

Written statements (Rule 149)

 
  
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  Jean-Pierre Audy (PPE), par écrit. – Je regrette que nous soyons passé de la situation d'insurrection à celle d'hypothèse de frappes militaires sans tout faire pour un cessez-le-feu qui est nécessaire pour envisager une solution politique à laquelle nous, les Européens, sommes attachés. Je ne m'explique pas pourquoi les trois États-membres européens siégeant au Conseil de sécurité de l'ONU (Royaume-Uni, France, Luxembourg) ne se sont pas, à ma connaissance, concertés. Enfin, je regrette qu'un Conseil européen exceptionnel n'ait pas été convoqué pour que l'Union européenne, prix Nobel de la Paix 2012, prenne une initiative de paix et propose à la Communauté internationale, sous l'égide de l'ONU, un chemin de paix et, ce, sur la base de l'article 3 § 1 du Traité sur l'Union européenne qui indique que : " L'Union a pour but de promouvoir la paix, ...".

 
  
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  Светослав Христов Малинов (PPE), в писмена форма Няма съмнение, че когато днес светът обърне поглед към Близкия изток, първото, което вижда, е конфликтът в Сирия. Трагедията, в която един диктатор воюва със своя народ и дори използва химически оръжия срещу напълно невинни граждани, естествено приковава вниманието на всички.

Подобни престъпни действия, макар и в по-малък мащаб, се случиха обаче и в една друга страна от региона, която днес е в сянката на конфликта в Сирия. Става дума за Ирак и за екзекуциите, извършени в лагера Ашраф, приютил иранските дисиденти на иракска територия. Там, в ранните часове на 1 септември, бе извършено нападение върху напълно беззащитни и невъоръжени хора, които са под защитата на Женевската конвенция. Бяха убити 52 човека и са отвлечени 7.

Такава атака не може да се осъществи без знанието на иракското правителство. И моментът не е избран случайно. Неговите организатори очевидно са смятали, че в разгара на сирийската криза техният варварски акт няма да породи възмущението, което заслужава.

Призоваваме баронеса Аштън и европейските лидери да поискат независимо от иракската държава разследване и да покажат по категоричен начин своята решимост виновниците да бъдат наказани. Ако не направим нищо, то нашето бездействие ще ни превърне в мълчаливи съучастници на тези отвратителни убийства.

 
  
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  Alexander Mirsky (S&D), in writing. – Any reason is used to get an opportunity for direct intervention in Syria. Today, the chemical weapons were figured out. Many years ago I also heard about nuclear and chemical weapons in Iraq. Then US Forces invaded Iraq and hanged the President. But weapons were not found! And no one apologised. I am categorically against the ‘export’ of democracy; I am against the arming of Islamists in Syria, against impudence and cynicism. Therefore I will not support the nonsense laid out in the resolution. Only peaceful measures can achieve civil peace in Syria. The rest is aggression, violation and impudent lies.

 
  
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  Ioan Mircea Paşcu (S&D), in writing. – Syria is not only a real tragedy, with tens of thousands killed and millions of displaced people, but also an exercise in the limits of realpolitik itself. Indeed, looked at from every angle, the situation in Syria looks bad; no conceivable option seems to be working: the hatred against Assad, the infighting within the opposition, Russia’s intransigence, the lack of Western unity, the ghost of Iraq, all combine to create this impossible situation. However, due to its high negative potential, the crisis cannot be left to continue much longer. Of course, there is no military solution. But the use of the military instrument is only meant to prepare the ground for a political solution. This is best illustrated by the slightly positive perspective of the latest proposal to the Syrian authorities to place their chemical weapons under international control. If it was not backed by the potential US strike, I wonder if (1) Russia would have come up with it in the first place and (2) the Syrian authorities would have indicated possible acceptance. It is not much, but it is something and, therefore, it should be pursued accordingly.

 
  
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  Monika Smolková (S&D), pisomne. – Súčasná situácia v Sýrií sa musí týkať každého obyvateľa Európy. Minulý rok dostala EÚ Nobelovú cenu mieru. Dnes máme príležitosť dokázať, že toto ocenenie si zaslúžime. V Sýrií sa dennodenne pácha násilie. Je to veľká tragédia, ktorá zatiaľ nemá mierové riešenia. V každej vojne najviac trpia ženy a deti. Aj medzi skoro dvoma miliónmi utečencov je najviac detí a žien. Sú zúfalí, očakávajú medzinárodnú pomoc, ale nemyslím si, že by to mala byť vojenská pomoc. Som presvedčená, že sa ešte nevyčerpali všetky možnosti mierového riešenia situácie v Sýrií. Použitie chemických zbraní, nech ich už použije ktorákoľvek z bojujúcich strán, sa musí stretnúť s ostrou kritikou a musí byť potrestané. Predstavitelia EÚ musia vyvinúť väčšie úsilie na medzinárodných rokovaniach a donútiť bojujúce strany k rokovaniam a k postupnému ukončeniu bojov. Som presvedčená, že cesta vedie cez úsilie obmedzenia dodávok zbraní každej z bojujúcich strán v Sýrií.

 
  
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  Indrek Tarand (Verts/ALE), in writing. – I believe we are all pleased with having this vital discussion. It is most important that the EU uses its famous soft power and harmony among Member States regarding the common foreign policy. However, it is impossible to see a leading role for France as it has sold Mistral war ships to Russia – the same country whose cynical behaviour regarding human rights and exploiting other countries’ conflicts we criticise. And it turns out that France could not contribute militarily in Syria as instead of building a fleet it is selling its ships. Ceterum censeo – France has decided to sell a Mistral-class warship to Russia; we believe that it will sincerely regret its action.

 
  
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  Marina Yannakoudakis (ECR), in writing. – As the bloodshed continues in Syria, I am distressed by the escalation of killings by both the army and the opposition forces. The use of chemical weapons is a war crime and it appears increasingly likely that the Syrian regime is to blame, with even the Arab League accusing President Assad of genocide. I want the unrest to end in Syria. I want to see the demise of the Assad regime. But, like the majority of the British people, I do not want to see members of Her Majesty’s Armed Forces dragged into the conflict. 179 British servicemen and women died in Iraq, more than all the other EU countries combined. In Afghanistan this figure rises to 444, again more than all the other EU countries combined. I am not an isolationist who does not wish to intervene in Syria merely to protect British lives, but I do not believe that a military response will succeed in bringing an end to the conflict. I also fear the unintended consequences of such an intervention. I am pleased that the British Parliament has spoken against intervention and I hope that this Parliament too will reject the military option.

 
  
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  Boris Zala (S&D), písomne Kolegovia, áno, v Sýrii treba sledovať dve línie: Odstrániť hrozbu použitia chemických zbraní a nájsť politické riešenie občianskej vojny. Musíme podporiť rusko-americký návrh, aby Sýria odovzdala chemické zbrane pod kontrolu OSN a aby boli zničené. Bez odkladu. Ak Syria splní túto podmienku, dôvod vojenskej akcie pominie. Ale nepodliehajme ilúzií, že to sýrsky režim urobí bez hrozby vojenského zásahu. A to isté platí aj pre proces politického zmierenia. Asad bez hrozby vojenského zásahu na nijakú dohodu nepristúpi. Obsah dohody musí byť jednoduchý: časový harmonogram pre vytvorenie dočasnej vlády, prípravy ústavy, procesu vytvorenia demokratických inštitúcií a následných volieb. Nepochybne súčasťou procesu zmierenia sa musia stať garancie menšinových práv a to tak pre alávitov či kresťanov. A samozrejme neprípustnosť akejkoľvek formy terorizmu. Kolegovia, odovzdanie chemických zbraní je prvý krok. Ale najvýznamnejší. Bude signálom všetkým, ktorí by chceli zneužiť chemické zbrane, že takýto krok nie je akceptovateľný pre nikoho. Ani pre Rusko a Čínu. Sýria musí podpísať Konvenciu o chemických zbraniach. Bude to čisté riešenie, legálne aj legitímne, lebo bude pod záštitou OSN a plne v súlade s medzinárodným právom. Ďakujem.

 
  
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  Paweł Zalewski (PPE), na piśmie. – Wystąpienie komisarz Ashton o Syrii było dziś, jak zwykle, ugładzone, ogólne, poprowadzone w dobrze znanej stylistyce: „staramy się, robimy, co możemy, jest wiele za i przeciw”, itd. Podsumowując, UE ogląda się na coraz bardziej fasadową Radę Bezpieczeństwa, a ta nie może się za bardzo porozumieć, inicjatywę przejmuje de facto Rosja, wydłużając czas stosunkowo czczych rozmów i dając Assadowi czas na wzięcie oddechu i uporządkowanie strategii.

Jutro Kerry spotka się z Ławrowem, a co z Unią Europejską...? Dziś miałem niezbyt miłe, natarczywe poczucie, że na sali plenarnej w Strasburgu unosił się duch bezradności. Moim zdaniem Europa powinna skoncentrować się na pomocy humanitarnej, medycznej i na zapewnieniu, choćby pod groźbą odwetu militarnego, by walczące strony wzajemnie uszanowały szpitale i inne punkty medyczne. O to właśnie chcę postulować. To może nie tak wiele, jakby niektórzy chcieli, ale takie stanowisko wydaje się w chwili obecnej najwłaściwszą (politycznie i etycznie) strategią dla Europy.

 
  

(1)See Minutes.

Juridisk meddelelse - Databeskyttelsespolitik