Skip to comments.Russia 'Never Supported' Syrian Government
Posted on 01/29/2013 6:49:36 PM PST by Tailgunner Joe
Russia says it "never supported" the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told reporters Monday in Moscow that Russia does not support one side in the Syrian conflict over another, and criticized what he said were other countries misrepresenting Russia's policies.
"We were never enchanted with this regime. And we never supported it," he said. "And all of our actions, aimed at helping to fulfill the Geneva agreement to form the transitional body, only confirm that we want the situation to stabilize, and the creation of the conditions that Syrians can themselves decide their fate -- of their own people, their own state, their own leadership."
His comments come a day after Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said Assad made a potentially "fatal" error by delaying democratic reforms demanded by Syria's opposition. He said Assad should have acted much faster to reach out to moderate opponents, and that he believes the president's chances of remaining in power are getting smaller each day.
Russia has been a longtime supplier of weapons to the ruling Assad family and has vetoed UN Security Council resolutions that would have condemned him for trying to crush what began as a peaceful pro-democracy uprising.
Also Monday, Syrian opposition members met with representatives from friendly countries in Paris, where French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius called for giving the opposition the means to defend itself and support its political aims.
"What we all want is that Syria can free itself. And we want to avoid what we call chaos. If we don't give the means to the Syrian people to go right to the end of its liberation, we all know that there is a risk that the massacres will increase, that antagonisms will develop," said Fabius. "That extremism and terrorism will prevail. We want to fight those."
Syrian state media said Sunday the government's top judicial council has suspended legal action against exiled opposition figures, to allow them to return home for a national dialogue proposed by President Assad earlier this month. However, Syria's exiled opposition coalition has consistently refused to deal with Assad, saying he must leave power before any peace talks can begin.
UN humanitarian chief Valerie Amos was in Damascus on Sunday to learn more about the suffering caused by the conflict, which she has described as "catastrophic."
The UN is to hold a donor conference in Kuwait Wednesday, to raise funds for Syria's humanitarian crisis.
The rebellion has evolved into civil war in which majority Sunni rebels and Islamist militants have been fighting to end the 12-year rule of Assad, a minority Alawite.
The United Nations estimates that more than 60,000 people have been killed since the Syrian uprising began with pro-democracy protests in March 2011, before evolving into a civil war.
Russia's new stance on Syria hailed by rebels - January 29, 2013 - "The unified command of the Free Syrian Army views the statements made by the Russian prime minister on Syria and the fate of Bashar al-Assad as Russia's new position towards the Syrian crisis," the FSA, the main armed opposition group operating in Syria, said in a statement.
Russia's "new stance" will allow Syria to "oust (Assad) by any way which the Syrian people wishes to choose", the FSA said.
"Those who place their stakes on Assad's victory have completely lost the game. Assad is the main part of the problem, and there is no solution to it."
A Korean source with help from Reuters and the AP on Russia’s stance on Syria .
I won’t believe a word unless I read it in Pravda.
Don’t cry for me dear Pravda
The truth is I never supported the Syrian government
All through my wild days
My mad existence
I kept my promise
Don’t keep your distance
The new Russia has real commercial interests that they seek to protect. Just do a google.com search or Russian Pipelines to Mediterranean ~ pretty impressive pictures ~ all is ‘splained!
Thanks and I will.
That strangely reminds me of after the fall of the Soviet Union when my dad went to Armenia. The Georgian’s had cut off the NG pipeline and their nuke plant was a copy of Chernobyl. Had it shut down for a refit. They were cutting down the utility poles for firewood.
(thanx for the link)
Does that mean the Syrians went to Russia and stole all of their military hardware from them?
Boy, those Syrians are quick and stealthy.
Russia’s been hanging out with leon paneta too much.
Now they’re following his speech revision guidelines /s
I would in no way voice support for Russia given its obvious ties to Assad Abdul Syria’s status quo. However, they appear to be pragmatic relative to our own gubmint’s schizophrenic approach to the Arab Spring. He also has appoint about leaving the country in a vacuum. One need only look to Libya and Egypt as examples of what not to do.