Dec 02, 2010
Kiev, (SANA)- President Bashar al-Assad on Thursday underscored the importance of the role played by the Syrian communities abroad to enhance bilateral relations between Syria and their countries of residence in all economic, trade, political, cultural and social areas, particularly in media and tourism fields.
The President's remarks came during his meeting with a number of the Syrian expatriate community in Ukraine.
President al-Assad highlighted the necessity of boosting communication between the Syrian community in Ukraine with their homeland and utilizing their experience and capabilities for its service, focusing particularly on transferring new technologies.
He called on the community members to take part in the comprehensive national development process in Syria through establishing joint investment projects and building firm bridges of cooperation between Syria and Ukraine.
The President was briefed by the Syrian expatriates on their views and suggestions on developing their work and activating their role in upgrading the relations between both countries.
The community members expressed appreciation of the interest President al-Assad shows to the Syrians living abroad, pledging to do their best to consolidate cooperation and friendship relations between the two friendly countries.
They also expressed their support and pride in Syria's policy under the leadership of President Bashar al-Assad in safeguarding the Arab rights and achieving security, stability and peace in the region.
"The meeting with President al-Assad establishes for practical moves we should take as members of the community to develop the relations between the two countries, link the common interests and build a communication bridge with the homeland Syria," said Ali Issa, head of the Syrian community in Ukraine, in a statement to SANA.
He added, "Today's meeting puts the community members in front of a new stage and at a quantum leap to boost bilateral relations in all fields."
Issa considered that the priority for the community is to activate areas of cooperation in economy, trade and investment, double inter-trade and work on investing the legal basis and the agreements signed between both countries, as well as building on the strategic vision of President al-Assad for achieving the interests of the two regions.
For his part, Head of the Syrian-Ukrainian Friendship Association for Medical Sciences Mohsen Said told SANA that the meeting with President al-Assad dealt with several issues, foremost was promoting relations with Ukraine particularly through establishing a free trade zone and cancelling entry visa requirements between both countries.
Said pointed out that the issue of establishing a joint scientific academy and importing all the scientific capabilities available in Ukraine was also raised during the meeting.
Nidal Fallaha, head of the Syrian community in Kharkiv described the meeting as "rich", expressing pride in President al-Assad's vision which aims at linking Syria with the world and enhancing its economic and political role.
He said that the Syrian community in Ukraine should play an important role in introducing the Ukrainian society to Syria's culture and identity through holding exhibitions, dialogue symposiums and cultural activities which convey the real image of Syria.
For his part, head of the Syrian Community in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev, Imad Wannous said the Syrian community is working on developing economic and investment relations with Ukraine as well as encouraging and helping Ukrainian investors to come to Syria in light of the good investment atmosphere it enjoys.
He added that President al-Assad's visit would contribute to opening wider cooperation prospects between the two countries in all fields.
Chairman of the Federation of the Social Organizations in Ukraine Ismail al-Kadi said there are seasonal cultural activities that contribute to introducing the Syrian culture to the Ukrainians and improving relations between the two countries and their peoples through dialogue and cultural exchange.
Syrian-Ukrainian Friendship Association Coordinator Mohammad Zeidieh said President al-Assad's visit to Ukraine is a quantum leap in the development of relations between the two countries.
Earlier, President al-Assad started a two-day official visit to Ukraine, during which he is to hold talks with President Viktor Yanukovych of Ukraine on the development of bilateral relations in different fields and the situation in the regional and international arenas.
Presidents al-Assad and Yanukovych will hold a press conference tomorrow to sum up their talks. A number of agreements between Syria and Ukraine will be inked.
President al-Assad will also hold talks with Ukraine's Parliament Speaker and Prime Minister.
An official Syrian delegation accompanies President al-Assad including Minister of Finance Mohammad al-Hossein, Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem, Presidential Political and Media Advisor Dr. Bouthaina Shaaban and Assistant Foreign Minister Abdul-Fattah Ammoura.
Last August, President al-Assad sent a letter to President Yanukovych, delivered by Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem, on means of enhancing the bilateral relations in various domains and the current situations in the region, with the Ukrainian President stressing that resuming dialogue on the political level will enable the two sides to push forward the bilateral relations.
Last October, the Syrian-Ukrainian Joint Governmental Committee held its 7th session in Kiev and discussed the rapidly developing economic relations and means of enhancing them, particularly the free trade zone agreement due to be signed between the two sides.
The two countries also signed a number of agreements in the cultural and agricultural domains and the protocol of the 7th Session.The Syrian-Ukrainian Businessmen Forum was also held.
The 6th Session of the Syrian-Ukrainian Governmental Committee was convened in October 2008 in Damascus in the presence of Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Turchinov.
During the session, eight agreements, memos of understanding and cooperation protocols were signed in the fields of industry, transport, housing, customs, justice and trade.