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Friends of Syria Group decision on arms supplies to opposition runs count political settlement - Foreign Ministry

June 24, 2013, 14:13 UTC+3

The Friends of Syria Group met within the restricted format with the participation of the foreign ministers from 11 countries

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MOSCOW, June 24 (Itar-Tass) - The Friends of Syria Group’s decision to supply weapons to the opposition run counters the political settlement, the Russian Foreign Ministry reported on Monday.

Commenting the Friends of Syria Group meeting in Doha on June 21, the Russian ministry said, “Such reports from Doha can only arouse serious concern. We’ll receive such information amidst growing arms supplies for Syrian militants from Qatar and Saudi Arabia and their training at the bases in Turkey and Jordan by American and French instructors.”

“The decisions taken in Doha provide unlimited military support to the Syrian opposition. But they run counter the soonest political settlement in Syria. Moreover, America accuses Russia of backing Damascus that heightens tension in Syria,” the ministry said.

“In fact the legitimate Syrian government expressed readiness to take part in the international conference in compliance with the Russian-American initiative. Unfortunately, the National Coalition and other opposition groups have not confirmed their intention to take part in the forum without any preconditions,” the ministry said.

“It is obvious that additional weapons supplies, which can, finally, fall in the hands of terrorists, are capable of spurring the use of force in Syria,” the ministry said.

Moscow urges “the Western and regional partners to concentrate on contributing to the soonest cessation of any violence in Syria and ensuring the political settlement due to the interests of all Syrian groups based on the Geneva communique of June 30, 2012”. “Based on this principle Russia will take part in the Rsusia-U.S.-U.N. meeting in Geneva on June 25,” the ministry said.

The Friends of Syria Group met within the restricted format with the participation of the foreign ministers from 11 countries, including the United States, Britain, France and several countries of the region. The meeting decided to start immediate weapons supplies to the opposition in Syria.

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