Russia and China on Monday vetoed a UN Security Council resolution that demanded a seven-day truce in Syria's Aleppo city, where the Syrian regime and its allies continue a large-scale offensive.
This is the sixth time Russia has vetoed a UN resolution on Syria since the conflict started in 2011 and the fifth time China has blocked action. Russian ambassador to UN, Vitaly Churkin, said that the action would allow opposition forces to regroup.
Earlier in the day, Russia said it would start talks with Washington on a withdrawal of opposition forces from Aleppo this week, as Syrian regime forces fought to seize more territory from rebels who are struggling to avoid a major defeat.
Churkin said that action by the Security Council should be postponed to provide time for those talks.
"That is a made-up alibi," Deputy US Ambassador to the United Nations Michele Sison told the council. "We have not reached a breakthrough because Russia has been more focused on preserving its military gains than helping Aleppo's citizens," she said.
Sandra Gathmann reports: