Johannesburg, Jan 14: Russia has said that Syrian President Bashar Assad’s removal from power was not a part of past international agreements on the crisis and it is impossible to implement.
Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov pointed out that this is a precondition that is not contained in the Geneva communique, which was agreed by world powers last year, and which is impossible to implement because it does not depend on anyone.
According to News, 24, Lavrov conceded that a rare speech Assad delivered on 6 Jan ary, laying out his own vision for a peace settlement probably did not go far enough and would not appease the armed opposition.
But he also urged Assad’s enemies to come out with a counterproposal that could get serious peace talks started between the two sides for the first time, the report said.
Russia recently reiterated its support for a transition plan that was agreed in Geneva on 30 June, but never implemented because of the fighting.
The Geneva deal calls for power to be handed to an interim government but offers no clear guidance about Assad’s future role.
Russia argues that only the Syrian people themselves can oust Assad through either elections or some form of negotiated settlement, the report said. (ANI)