30 August 201816:09

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks during talks with Walid Muallem, Syrian Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers, Foreign and Expatriates Minister, Moscow, August 30, 2018

1582-30-08-2018

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Minister Muallem,

My dear friend,

Colleagues,

Friends,

Welcome to the Russian Foreign Ministry in Moscow.

I know that this is not your only meeting here in the Russian capital. You are also having talks with Deputy Prime Minister Yury Borisov who replaced Dmitry Rogozin as the Co-Chairman of the Russian-Syrian Permanent Intergovernmental Commission for Trade, Economic, Scientific and Technical Cooperation on Russia’s side.

We believe that this is a rather timely meeting. There are tasks remaining for the complete eradication of terrorism in Syria. The necessary conditions have been created for peaceful life and a return of the refugees. Certainly, the projects of economic cooperation currently being discussed by the bilateral inter-governmental commission will contribute to this effort. Of course, we will discuss the external aspects of the situation in our country, including the importance of using the resources of the international community to assist Syria. In addition to that, we need to increase our progress towards the political process that began during the Syrian National Dialogue Congress in Sochi. All these efforts are facing strong opposition from those who want to undermine this activity and prevent an expeditious return to normal life and stabilisation in the country. We have seen such attempts and will present our assessment of these actions here today.

Of course, we will listen to the opinions of our Syrian friends. The stance of Russia and Syria on the issue is absolutely clear. It is based on international law, UNSC Resolution 2254, the main provision of which is the requirement that the Syrian nation determine the future of its own country. We will additionally share our impression of the meetings with our colleagues from Turkey, Saudi Arabia and our other partners.

There are many points to cover. Welcome. I am very happy to see you.

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