Russia and China today threw out a UN resolution to impose sanctions on Zimbabwe for its violent presidential election, Reuters reports. Nine countries supported the US-backed sanctions, which would levied an arms embargo and restricted the travel and finances of officials, including President Mugabe. But five nations voted against it, calling the resolution unworthy of the UN Security Council.
Veto-holding Russia and China and their three voting partners—South Africa, Libya, and Vietnam—argued that Zimbabwe falls outside the council's purview of keeping international peace. In a heated exchange, U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad said Russia's vote "raises doubts about its reliability as a G8 partner." But Russian Ambassador Vitaly Churkin countered that the resolution is "illegitimate and dangerous."