MOSCOW, March 26 (Itar-Tass) — On Sunday, before leaving for the nuclear security summit in the Republic of Korea, Dmitry Medvedev had a meeting with the UN and the League of Arab States’ special envoy on Syria Kofi Annan. He expressed the view that Annan’s mission is, probably, the last chance to avoid a civil war in Syria.
The Russian president expressed confidence the mission of the special envoy of the UN and LAS on Syria is, probably, the last chance for that country to avoid the bloodshed scenario, the Rossiiskaya Gazeta writes. “We appreciate highly your efforts. Perhaps, for Syria this is the last chance to avoid a protracted bloody civil war. We hope your work will bring a positive result,” Medvedev said. “Moscow is ready to support Annan reach a positive result. We shall provide various kinds of assistance in different directions where Russia is capable of such assistance.” Annan, in his turn, took with enthusiasm the offer of assistance and said he relied on assistance and cooperation of Moscow in settlement of the situation in that country, where over a year anti-governmental protests had continued.
On March 21, the UN Security Council adopted a statement on Syria, which approves the mission of Annan and his suggestions on settlement of the conflict, the Komsomolskaya Pravda writes. Annan was appointed the UN and LAS joint special envoy on Syria a month earlier. He suggested introducing immediate ban on use of heavy armoury by government’s troops and removing governmental troops from cities, opening access to humanitarian organisations to the regions of fighting, guaranteeing for the work of humanitarian missions a daily two-hour cease-fire, providing free transportation of reporters and respecting rights for peaceful rallies. From Moscow, Kofi Annan left for negotiations in Beijing. Over past six months, China and Russia blocked twice resolutions on Syria at the UN Security Council.