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'Victory': Russia-US chem arms deal 'prevented war against Syria' – Damascus

Published time: September 15, 2013 14:04
Edited time: September 15, 2013 15:11
A Syrian army tank maneuvers in the Eastern Ghouta area on the northeastern outskirts of Damascus on August 30, 2013.( AFP Photo / Sam Skaine)

A Syrian army tank maneuvers in the Eastern Ghouta area on the northeastern outskirts of Damascus on August 30, 2013.( AFP Photo / Sam Skaine)

The US-Russian deal on dismantling Syria’s chemical weapons has saved the region from a full-scale war, a minister in President Assad’s government said Sunday. Meanwhile, rebel forces have called for a no-fly ban to be imposed on Syria’s Air Force.

The praise for the diplomatic effort, which facilitated Syria joining the Chemical Weapons Convention and defused US plans to launch a missile strike against Damascus comes from Ali Haidar, the Minister of State for National Reconciliation Affairs in the Syrian government. He was speaking to RIA Novosti a day after Saturday’s deal was reached in Geneva.

“We welcome those accords. On the one hand they will help Syrian to find a way out of the crisis, on the other they prevented a war against Syria by eliminating a pretext used by those who wanted to start it,” Haidar said.

He added that the agreement negotiated by Russia’s Foreign Minster Sergey Lavrov and US Secretary of State John Kerry is “a victory for Syria, which has been won thanks to our Russian friends.”

Syria's Minister of State for National Reconciliation Ali Haidar.(Reuters / Khaled al-Hariri)

The minister added that the agreement gives hope that Syria’s other problems can be resolved soon.

The US-Russian agreement calls for a political resolution of the Syrian conflict, military non-intervention and destruction of the chemical weapons stockpiles in Syria by mid-2014. The UN Security Council is to prepare a resolution, which would formalize the agreement and put it into force.

With the latest period of escalation in the 2 1/2-year conflict appearing to have subsided for now, some Syrian opposition groups have demanded that the Syrian Army be restrained in its fight with rebel forces. Syria's National Coaltion of Syrian Revolution and Opposition Forces has called on the international community to force Damascus to stop using its air superiority in the conflict.

“The prohibition of chemical weapons, the use of which has left more than 1,400 civilians dead, [should] be extended to the use of ballistic missiles and aircraft against urban areas,” the group said in a statement.

Comments (37)


Joseph Blosch 17.09.2013 17:58

Obama is stopped for now - that's the important thing. He wants to use Syria as a distraction from his own activities back in the US.


Daniel Equality 16.09.2013 06:31

I truly hope war has been averted. I am American and do not trust my leaders. This is just a small victory in an ongoing struggle to stop the US in its constant attacks and insatiable appetite for wealth and resources. In order to truly maintain peace and justice, it is essential that we revolutionize our thoughts and forcibly remove those who attempt to enslave us and dominate the globe. The safety of our families and other precious human lives on this planet would have been jeopardized by our inaction. If ever there is a time for revolution, the time is now.


Rod Lloyd 16.09.2013 01:47

It has NOT prevented a war it has only delayed it, Amerika is still threatening no matter what, the slightest little thing now and they will attack, just as Israel has ordered!!
It seems the leadership of Israle is exactly the same as the leadership of Amerika, nothing but warmongers, they need removing and removing permanently.
The n perhaps we can all live a peaceful life with each other.

View all comments (37)
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