MOSCOW, December 9. /TASS/. The demand for artificially setting a date when Syrian President Bashar Assad should step down run counter to international law and democracy, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told Italian media in an interview.
"For the time being partners link the full mobilization of the anti-terrorist potential with Bashar Assad’s resignation," Lavrov said. "There are nuances, though: they no longer demand his disappearance in an instant, they permit his participation in the transitional political process, but they wish to see some deadline, a date when Assad will stop performing his powers."
"The Russian president has responded to these ideas more than once. We believe that this kind of approach is artificial and in conflict with international law and the rules of democracy," Lavrov said.
"We all put our signatures within the framework of the Vienna process to the need for recognizing the right of the Syrian people to decide the future of Syria on their own. This should be our point of departure."