President al-Assad: Any step on Syria’s future is up to the Syrians to decide

Damascus, SANA – President Bashar al–Assad affirmed on Wednesday that any step pertaining to Syria’s future is up to the Syrian people to decide.

He was speaking during a meeting with the youth religious team that includes religious figures and Islamic preachers from all Syrian provinces with the attendance of Minister of Awqaf (Religious Endowments) Mohammad Abdul-Sattar al-Sayyed.

During the meeting, President al-Assad lauded the work which the team has been able to achieve within one year of its creation, considering that this team gives a civilized image of moderation in the Islamic religion.

He affirmed that one of the most important things that the team has to attend to is reshaping terms and correcting misconceptions in order to spread the true religion in the face of extremism.

President al-Assad pointed out that the war the Syrians are currently waging is a war of mind, and hence comes the need that the team members master dialogue tools and put into use the method of analysis and inference in order to establish a balanced non-superficial discourse in raising religious issues.

He stressed the importance of methodology in work and the developing of criteria to the effect of creating a collective state of consciousness because “we can’t understand the Holy Quran, if we do not understand life, and we can’t apply it unless we understand the philosophy of life.”

For their part, members of the youth religious team briefed the President on their work over the past period and their plan for 2017 that will be focused on the strategy of change in the way of thinking and regarding the pattern followed in religious discourse, relying in this regard on the method of analysis and not dictation.

They used the opportunity of the meeting to convey to President al-Assad Aleppo people’s pride in his words when he said “the liberation of Aleppo has turned time into history. Members of the team who are from Lattakia province also conveyed to the President the great relief felt over the recent liberation of kidnapped people held by terrorist organizations in 2013.

In his comments about Aleppo, President al-Assad considered that the steadfastness of the people of Aleppo has been a decisive factor in the victory over terrorism along with the sacrifices of the Syrian Arab Army, noting that Aleppo has suffered a great deal, because the plot planned against it has been a huge one.

M. al-Frieh/H. Said

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