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Russian Foreign Minister in Damascus seeking hope for Syria

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Syria could get another chance at a diplomatic escape route from its continuing political crisis as the Russian delegation has arrived on Tuesday to hold talks with President Assad.

A last-ditch delegation to Damascus bearing a personal message for Bashar al-Assad from President Medvedev has been welcomed by thousands of people lining the streets of the Syrian capital.

Russian FM is holding talks with Assad in what many see as the Syrian president’s last opportunity to establish an internationally recognized diplomatic mechanism for resolving the violence that is tearing the country apart.

“It is in Russia’s interest that the Arab nations live in peace and accord,” remarked Lavrov opening talks with Assad. “Every leader in every country must realize his share of responsibility. You do realize yours.”

Amid speculation that the message Lavrov carries may include a suggestion that Assad resign, FM Sergey Lavrov stressed asking a president of a sovereign country to step down is not a Russian profession.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev did not exclude the possibility that his letter may include a mechanism for President Assad to relinquish power, in case the violence from both sides does not stop.

The visit comes amid international anger over Russia & China’s veto of what they saw as a “premature” UN Security Council vote. The UK and US simultaneously withdrew their ambassadors to Damascus Monday, with the UK Foreign Secretary calling Assad’s regime “murderous and doomed.” Italy’s Foreign Ministry has allegedly recalled its ambassador from Syria on Tuesday, reports Al Arabia.

The Russian FM dubbed the resolution draft text “one-sided” and international reaction to the veto “hysterical”.


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