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UN technical mission to visit Syria for consultations on settling crisis

March 18, 2012, 9:04 UTC+3

“This is an important step in the right direction,” Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov said

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MOSCOW, March 18 (Itar-Tass) — The UN technical mission is expected to visit Syria on March 18 to start consultations on settling the crisis, reported Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov in his microblog in Twitter.

“This is an important step in the right direction,” he emphasized.

Special representative of the UN and the Arab League Kofi Annan who made on Friday a brief report at the UN Security Council, said of an intention to send a preparatory mission to Syria to discuss mechanisms of monitoring the situation in that country.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Saturday that “Kofi Annan forwarded his proposals to the Syrian leadership”. “I can assure you that they don’t contain a question on Bashar Assad’s resignation. I believe that the question on Syria’s future should be settled by Syrians themselves.

“Russia will back any understanding, worded out by the results of a All-Syrian political dialogue between the government and all opposition groups,” the minister emphasised.

It is probable at the same time that the visit’s time can be shifted on, since two car bombs were blasted in Damascus on Saturday. Terrorists again targeted at state structures of the Syrian republic. As a result, 27 people were killed and over 100 wounded.

The Russian Foreign Ministry stressed in this connection that “apprehensive is the fact that bloody actions by terrorists, carried out according to the Al Qaeda traditional scheme, coincided with stepped-up international efforts on resolving the intra-Syrian crisis.

“The matter in question in this case is the Russian-backed mission by special representative of the UN and the Arab League on Syria Kofi Annan who has just announced a dispatch of experts to Damascus to discuss proposals on a political settlement of the Syrian problem.” 

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