New York, SANA -Deputy Prime Minister, Foreign and Expatriates Minister Walid al-Moallem affirmed on Monday that the main battles in Syria have almost reached the end as “we are writing the last chapter of the crisis in Syria thanks to the victories of the Syrian Arab Army and the support provided by the allies.”
Al-Moallem told Russia Today TV in an interview that whoever watches the field operations carried out by the Syrian Army and its friends and allies can see that over the past three months, it has been able to liberate more than 55 percent of the Syrian territories.
He added that the measures on the ground such as lifting the siege imposed on Deir Ezzor, and earlier liberating Palmyra and al-Sikhnieh are significant battles which are equal to liberating Aleppo, “that is why I say that the main battles in Syria have almost reached the end and consequently, we are writing the final chapter of the crisis.”
Al-Moallem went on saying that the US presence on the Syrian territories is “illegitimate and it came without permission by the Syrian Government,” adding “we will knock all doors, and when diplomacy will fail, we will consider other solutions.”
Regarding the referendum on the secession of “Kurdistan” northern Iraq, al-Moallem said “this issue is categorically rejected by us, and we are with the unity of Iraq,”
“The Syrian Kurds want a type of self-management within the borders of the Syrian Arab Republic, and this issue is negotiable and can be discussed, and when we eradicate ISIS, we can sit with them and agree on the shape of the future,” al-Moallem elaborated.
Talking about the possibility of establishing de-escalation zones in the north of Syria, al-Moallem said that this issue requires the acceptance of different parties and not just the Syrian Government as a result of the foreign interference in the crisis in Syria.
Answering a question on the Turkish stance and Turkey’s existence as a guarantor state of stopping hostilities, he said that “any foreign existence in Syria without the acceptance of the Syrian Government is illegal, and we agreed on establishing a de-escalation zone in Idleb because we considered that as a test for the Turkish intentions.”
He added that halting the Turkish support to terrorist groups will be the first turning point in the Turkish stance, “and after that, we will discuss any Turkish proposal regarding the improvement of relations.”
Al-Moallem welcomed the Iranian support provided to Syria and the role of Iran as a guarantor of Astana process, saying “Iran has stood by us and helped us in combating terrorism.”
As for the Israeli repeated aggressions on Syria, al-Moallem said “priority is given now to combating ISIS and Jabhat al-Nusra terrorist organizations,” stressing that “Syria will respond to the Israeli raids in case they will continue or not.”
Commenting on the Gulf crisis and its consequences on the development of the scene in Syria, al-Moallem said “I haven’t felt that, what we are concerned about in that crisis is who finances and arms the terrorist organizations…Till now the support is continued to these terrorist organizations.”
He added “we have informed the Russian side that we welcome the joining of China, Iraq, the UAE and Egypt as observer states of Astana process, and there is a fifth state which I have forgotten.”
He asserted that there is a strong and daily cooperation with Iraq because “we are fighting a common enemy, but we don’t have any channels of communication with the US with regard to fighting ISIS…We are coordinating with Iraq and we don’t interfere in whoever coordinates with Iraq.”
Speaking on the relation with the European states, al-Moallem said “Any states which want to cooperate in fighting terrorism must firstly stop the direct and indirect support to terrorism and must adopt a realistic policy towards the crisis in Syria, and they must also seek to lift the coercive unilateral economic measures imposed on Syria.”
In a reply to a question on the international committee for the investigation into the use of chemical weapons, he said “We are cooperating with our friends in this issue and we demand forming a professional international investigation committee that is far from politicization.”
He affirmed the all the UN institutions exist in Syria and “we are cooperating with them in the framework of their specialties, and I think that there is no problem in dealing with them as long as they deal with the issue with professionalism”
Regarding the negotiations in Geneva, he said that “it is difficult to judge in advance if whether Geneva process will achieve a progress or not due to the foreign interferences in it.”
Answering a question on the file of the reconstruction, Minister al-Moallem said that there are plans which are understudy by the Syrian Government for the stage of the reconstruction, and the priority at that stage will be given to the friends of Syria who have stood by it during the crisis.
He indicated that the states which have conspired against Syria must contribute to the reconstruction process as an apology for the Syrian people.
Speaking on Deir Ezzor victory, al-Moallem said “Syria is looking forwards for liberating every inch of its territories from terrorism, and if this is possible before the end of the current year, we welcome it and we wish that it will happen, but we will continue our struggle till liberating every inch.”
Answering a question on the possibility of holding dialogue with some of the Arab states and of returning to the Arab League, al-Moallem said “We are the victims of the conspiracies hatched by some of the Arabs…We want to return to an active Arab League, not a league that violates its pact by freezing the membership of Syria and by allowing the aggression on Libya.”
With regard to the national reconciliations in Syria, he said” we are building hopes on the reconciliations inside Syria, and we have made great achievements in this domain as thousands of the Syrians are living today a normal life in their homeland.”