Russia and China, who are having a Russia-China Strategic Security Dialogue in Moscow this week, have jointly responded to the Aug. 20 threat by President Obama to take unilateral military action in Syria, in the case of some alleged threat of use of chemical weapons by President Bashar al-Assad, by reiterating their strict commitment to observing the principles of national sovereignty enshrined in the UN charter and international law.
"Russia and China have very reliable criteria with which we measure all our steps. This is the necessity to strictly observe the norms of international law and the principles contained in the UN Charter, and not to allow their violation," Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said as he was meeting with Chinese State Councillor Dai Bingguo in Moscow.
Lavrov told the press that effective approaches can only be collective, and cited the resolution signed by the UN, EU and Arab League on June 30 in Geneva, as exemplary of what needs to be done.
Russia and China have consistently pressed the principle of national sovereignty, in the wake of the blatantly illegal violation of that principle in Libya, a violation which ended with the barbaric murder of the captive Muammar Qaddafi. So far, that assertion—backed up implicitly by opposition from the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff to a new Obama war—has worked.
The stakes, should the U.S. move outside the United Nations to violate national sovereignty, were laid out most clearly by Russian Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev in a May 17 speech where he said: "Such [rash, military—ed] actions, which undermine state sovereignty, can easily lead to full-scale regional wars even—I am not trying to scare anyone here—with the use of nuclear weapons. Everybody should remember this especially when we analyse the concept of state sovereignty."