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Austrian president: Syrian crisis can be settled only by diplomatic means

December 24, 2015, 14:17 UTC+3 VIENNA
Settling the conflict in Syria is the top priority task for the international community, Austrian President Heinz Fischer says
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© Mikhail Pochuev/TASS

VIENNA, December 24. /TASS/. The Syrian crisis can be settled only by diplomatic means, Austrian President Heinz Fischer said in an exclusive interview with TASS First Deputy Director General Mikhail Gusman.

Settling the conflict in Syria is the top priority task for the international community, Fischer said. "The central problem now is the war in Syria and around it, civil war, great number of casualties — more than 250,000 people, as well as its influence on the whole region," he stated. "In this case, negotiations are necessary, and they represent the only opportunity to solve this problem," the Austrian president noted.

Migrant flows from Syria and other countries of the region represent a serious challenge for Austria now, he continued. "We have a big problem with refugees. We are holding intensive talks with Germany, Sweden, with the European Union, in order to solve it," the president said.

Talking about the tasks that his successor will face, Fischer, whose second presidential term ends in 2016, noted that "these problems cannot be solved in the next six months." "They [problems] are not limited by my presidency. These are the problems for the next six years," he added.

"I get an impression that the number of tasks on the international level is not decreasing. On the contrary, it is only growing," Fischer said. "Every time one problem is solved, there is a possibility two new problems will emerge," he noted. "That is why we should all work together at international levels, especially in the framework of UN, in order to deal with these problems," the Austrian president concluded.

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