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Damascus should be recognized partner in dialogue on Syria — Russian diplomat

November 21, 2014, 21:30 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Settlement is only possible if the current government is perceived by everyone as an appropriate partner in dialogue
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© AP Photo/Diaa Hadid

MOSCOW, November 21. /TASS/. The Syrian settlement is only possible if everyone considers official Damascus as an appropriate partner in dialogue, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said Friday.

“We have never concealed that we believe it is important to develop relations with that country. Settlement is only possible if the current government is perceived by everyone as an appropriate partner in dialogue,” Ryabkov told journalists.

On November 26-27, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem is to visit Moscow.

“I don’t want to anticipate the results of the Syrian foreign minister’s visit - it’s just part of work,” Ryabkov said.

“We have an intergovernmental commission operating. There are many questions regarding the prospects of political settlement. Call it Geneva-3 or some other way. Of course, this can’t be discussed without Syrians, so the upcoming visit is so significant,” he said.

Fighting between Syrian government troops and militants has left over 100,000 people dead and displaced millions since its start in 2011, according to UN statistics.

The first two rounds of an international peace conference on Syria, dubbed Geneva-2, organized by Russia and the United States and designed to negotiate a solution to the Syrian crisis, brought no particular progress in January and February 2014. The parties to the Syrian conflict agreed to continue their discussions.

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