Zakharova: Conditions proposed by Riyadh opposition seek to abort Geneva dialogue

Moscow, SANA – Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova said that the Syrian government has affirmed in words and actions that it will participate in the dialogue in Geneva, while the members of the Riyadh opposition continue to employ their favorite tactic of make preconditions in a bid to abort the dialogue.

In a press conference on Friday, Zakharova said the Riyadh opposition’s exclusionary tendencies and their rejection of middle-ground solutions show their desire to undermine the agreement for cessation of hostilities and to thwart any stable and productive political process.

She noted that the Turkish authorities are hindering the crossing of trucks carrying aid to Syria in spite of international resolutions regarding humanitarian aid, while the Syrian side has allowed aid to enter, adding that there’s no US supervision of the crossing points used by Turkey, and that Ankara should invite observers if it wants to refute accusations of its involvement of smuggling contraband and terrorists across borders.

Zakharova also criticized the statements of NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg who accused Russia of hindering political settlement in Syria and causing the emigration crisis, saying these statements are mere propaganda, adding that Russia is concerned about the agreements between the EU and Ankara on returning refugees en masse to Turkey, calling on Turkey to be more responsible in this regard.

On a relevant note, Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov and Syria’s Ambassador to Russia Riyad Haddad met on Friday and discussed in details issues pertaining to the political resolution of the crisis in Syria, including the implementation of the cessation of hostilities and the talks in Geneva.

Hazem Sabbagh

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