Lavrov: Russia’s Priority Is Achieving Comprehensive Solution in Syria Not Regime Change
Jan 30, 2013
Russia’s Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov, said that that the Geneva statement, issued by the international action group on Syria on June 30th last year, needs no clarification or interpretation as it simply provides for halting violence by all sides and nominating the negotiators to form the structure of the temporary leading body and specify its tasks.
In an article published by the Diplomatic Group Annual Bulletin for 2012, Lavrov added that we are very determined to go ahead with solving the crisis in Syria through Geneva statement and the rest is related to our partners.
He expressed his country’s belief that the UN Security Council and all foreign players who have influence on the situation in Syria should pave the way for implementing this document.
He added that these efforts are based on UNSC resolutions and the Geneva statement, which has been reached with Russia’s serious efforts.
Lavrov stressed that his country will continue working to achieve a settlement for the crisis in Syria as the fighting is getting more violent and causing more victims.
The Russian Foreign Minister said that Russia is doing its best to have violence halted and get the conflict parties to set down around the negotiating table through which the Syrians have to reach reconciliation and agree on the political structure of their country.
He added that Russia’s priority is reaching a comprehensive settlement for the crisis, rather than changing the regime, which explains the use of veto by Russia and China at the UN Security Council when there were intentions for military intervention in Syria.
Lavrov warned that the doubled game in the current situation in Syria is very serious as it will lead to nothing but the militarization and escalation of conflict as well as to stoking violence and increasing extremism and terrorist threats.
He stressed that the alternative to the peaceful solution in Syria is the spread of bloody chaos, adding that the more the conflict expands the worse the situation gets for all.
He noted that the situation in Syria and the region raises serious concerns, adding that the terrorist acts are being committed on a daily basis and the support of the fighting groups, including those which fight in the African deserts, with arms is still on.
Gatilov: Geneva Statement is Still Urgent in Vital, Main Obstacle is Interpretation of Its Articles and Behavior of Some Sides and Foreign Players
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov said in a statement on Wednesday that the Geneva statement on Syria is still as urgent and vital as ever, voicing Russia’s readiness to discuss new mechanisms for implementing it with its colleagues.
Gatilov said that this doesn’t mean reconsidering the statement as Russia believes that it contains the articles needed for settlement in Syria, and that these articles aren’t the issue but rather the main obstacle is the interpretation of the statement and the behavior of some sides of the conflict and foreign players who are betting on a resolution and change of government through force, which is why they reject dialogue.
He noted that Russia launched an initiative for a second session of the workgroup on Syria in what is known as Geneva 2, stressing the need to expand participants and involve important local players like Saudi Arabia and Iran, noting that other countries were evasive towards this suggestion.
Gatilov stressed the need to formulate the Syrian solution via group effort through the workgroup, and that talks shouldn’t be about imposing solutions from outside but rather on launching political dialogue as per the commitments made by the foreign sides that took part in the Geneva statement.
He pointed out that Russia is in contact with both the Syrian authority and the opposition, sending both sides messages to end violence, launch political dialogue and resolve the crisis independently without relying on external aid, voicing hope that other sides would adopt this approach.
Gatilov said that there’s no talk of a new Security Council resolution on Syria, and that not adopting the Geneva statement by the Security Council officially was a mistake, and that this didn’t happen because of the position of some members who didn’t support this idea.
He added that Moscow is still in contact with UN Envoy to Syria Lakhdar Ibrahimi and that Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov will meet Ibrahimi on the sideline of the International Security Conference in Munich, voicing hope that Ibrahimi will continue seeking means to resolve the crisis in Syria.
R. Raslan/ H. Said / H. Sabbagh