Russian President Vladimir Putin. File photo
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Urfa, Turkey – Russian President Vladimir Putin reaffirmed his country’s consistent position on supporting the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, warning that any use of force by West to end the civil war would worsen the situation in Syria.
“Our fear is that Syria could plunge into the same situation as Libya and Iraq,” Putin told reporters in St Petersburg.
Putin also emphasized his hope that Iran and world powers would reach a final agreement soon on Tehran’s nuclear program.
In another context, the U.S.-Russian discussions continue in the corridors of the U.N. Security Council to find a mechanism to identify those responsible for the chemical attacks in Syria.
The U.S. policy to counter the Islamic State group (IS/ISIS), which controls large areas of Iraq and Syria, “had so far lamentable and tragic consequences,” Putin added.
Washington has backed Syrian rebels to oust Assad and is currently making efforts to form a moderate Syrian opposition force to fight ISIS.
Putin stressed that it is up to the Syrian people to decide the fate of Assad, adding Russia would not call on him to step down.
“However, Russia will urge Assad to work with his opponents inside Syria to achieve political reforms,” Putin said.
In the meantime, Vitaly Churkin, Russian ambassador to the United Nations, revealed Friday a Russian proposal that would identify those responsible for chemical attacks.
Speaking to ARA News, human rights activist Abdul Majeed Salqini said: “As long as Russia is a strong supportive to the Assad’s regime, the crisis will go on and on, and the Syrian people will bleed more and more.”
“On the other hand, if the U.S. is serious about removing Assad and stopping the bloodshed of innocent people in Syria, it would move without a consensus from the U.N.,” he said.
Russia used the veto several times to prevent the U.N. from taking any action against Assad regime in Syria.
Reporting by: Jan Nasro
Source: ARA News