Asia Pacific

Saudi Arabia rejects Security Council seat

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia with French President Francois Hollande, who went to the desert kingdom in early November for talks about Syria and Iran. (Photo: Saudi Press Agency/AP)Saudi Arabia has rejected Friday a seat on the U.N. Security Council just hours after it was elected as one of the Council's 10 nonpermanent members.
 
In a statement issued through the state Saudi Press Agency, the Middle Eastern nation thanked those countries "that have given (it) their confidence" but said the 15-member body is incapable of resolving the world's conflicts.
 
The Saudi Foreign Ministry noted, in particular, that the Council had failed in its duties toward Syria.
 
It said this alleged failure enabled Syrian President Bashar Assad's regime to perpetrate the killings of its people, including with chemical weapons, without facing any deterrents or punishment.
 
The Ministry also said the Council has not been able to resolve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict over the past decades and has failed to transform the Middle East into a zone free of weapons of mass destruction.
 
Contributing: Associated Press

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