Assad thanks Russia for helping Syria face 'savage attack', creating new global balance
"We highly value the Russian stance towards Syria. Such stands raise hope for a new roadmap for the world power balance," the broadcaster quoted al-Assad as saying at the meeting.
President Bashar al-Assad thanked key backer Russia for helping Syria face down what he described as a "savage attack" by Western-backed Islamic extremists, according to state television.
Russia is helping "create a new global balance", Assad said, after Moscow opposed the use of force should the Damascus regime refuse to hand over its chemical stockpile.
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov in turn said that a political solution to the Syrian crisis, based on international law, has no alternative.
“Russia’s position remains unchanged. We reject threats to use force against Syria and urge respect for the right of peoples to determine their own future,” Ryabkov said.
Both sides underscored the significance of “maintaining close coordination and further working consultations between Moscow and Damascus,” Syria’s SANA news agency reports.
Russian deputy foreign minister Sergei Ryabkov has met with Syria’s embattled leader, Bashar al-Assad, the Russian Damascus embassy’s spokesman confirmed on Wednesday. No details of the meeting were revealed.
On Tuesday, Mr. Ryabkov had lengthy negotiations with Syria’s Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem, where they discussed the US-Russia brokered deal on elimination of Syrian chemical weapons.
The Russian foreign official told the media the meet-up had been very productive in that the Syrian government had proven its commitment to report details of its chemical arsenal to the anti- chemical weapons organization.
Sergei Ryabkov also said Damascus had handed Russia new evidence implicating rebels in a chemical attack outside Damascus on August 21.
Voice of Russia, RIA, AFP, dpa