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Moscow does not agree to external players' deciding on Syria's destiny

June 15, 2012, 16:19 UTC+3

Russia continues consultations on a holding a conference on Syria with all other countries

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MOSCOW, June 15 (Itar-Tass) — Moscow does not agree to the involvement of foreign players in the efforts to decide on Syria's destiny, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Friday after talks with his Iraqi counterpart, Hoshyar Zebari.

Russia continues consultations on a holding a conference on Syria with all other countries, which it finds necessary to invite to the table of negotiations.

"Considering the knottiness of the whole situation, it won't be easy to coordinate all the aspects of the event in advance," Lavrov said.

The list of participants should be compact but authoritative and should include all the key external players -- the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, Iraq, Iran, Jordan, Turkey, Qatar, the Arab League, and the EU.

"The second crucial moment is the contents of the negotiations," Lavrov said. "We feel confident foreign players should discuss the measures that might be taken to help coordinate an all-Syria dialogue -- the one between the government and all the opposition groupings, something that's envisioned by the Kofi Annan plan."

"Some of our counterparts have different interpretations of the role of external players and they propose to hold discussions of some sort on Syria and to foreclose the plight of that country in a certain way but we don't agree to this," Lavrov said. "It's up to the Syrians themselves to decide on what the destiny of their country should be like."



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