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Assad: Syria Peace Not Related Mainly to Astana, But to Fighting Terrorism



Syrian President Bashar al-Assad stressed that peace in the war-torn country can be achieved through fighting terrorism and dialogue between Syrians.

In a statement to Belgian media, President Assad assured that Syria is owned by the Syrians, noting that it was too early to judge or expect regarding the new administration in Washington.

Peace can be secured in Syria through two things, President Assad said, noting that the first thing is fighting terrorism and stopping the flow of terrorists, while the second thing is dialogue between the Syrians.

“If you want to talk about how to see the peace, it’s not related mainly to Astana; it’s related to something much bigger: how can we stop the flowing of the terrorists toward Syria, or in Syria, how can we stop the support from regional countries like Turkey, Gulf states, or from Europe like France and UK, or from the US during the Obama administration. If we deal with that title, this is where you can talk about the rest, about the political procedure,” Assad told the Belgian media.

“Astana is one of the initiatives during this war on Syria, and it’s about the dialogue between the Syrians. Now it’s too early to judge Astana, the first one was positive because it was about the principles of the unity of Syria, about the Syrians deciding their future. How can you implement this communique? That’s the question, and I think we are going to see Astana 2 and so on. So, the peace is two things: fighting terrorists and terrorism, stopping the flowing of terrorism, every kind of logistical support. Second, dialogue between the Syrians to decide the future of their country and the whole political system. These are the headlines about how we see the future of Syria,” the Syrian leader added.

On his expectations from the new administration in Washington, President Assad said: “What we heard as statements by Trump during the campaign and after the campaign is promising regarding the priority of fighting terrorists, and mainly ISIL, that’s what we’ve been asking for during the last six years. So, I think this is promising, we have to wait, it’s still early to expect anything practical. It could be about the cooperation between the US and Russia, that we think is going to be positive for the rest of the world, including Syria. So, as I said, it’s still early to judge it.”

Meanwhile, President Assad pointed out that the ceasefire in Syria “is not dead,” saying it is natural to have breaches in any ceasefire across the world.

Asked about Europe role in fighting terrorism, President Assad said the “EU is supporting the terrorists in Syria from the very beginning of the crisis under different titles: humanitarians, moderate, and so on.”

In this context, President Assad said EU has to take a very clear position regarding the sovereignty of Syria and stop supporting the terrorists.

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