PARIS, May 10. /TASS/. A joint statement of Russia and the United States is a step in the right direction, Bassma Kodmani, a representative of the Syrian opposition High Negotiations Committee, told TASS on Monday.
"It is a step in the right direction," Kodmani said commenting on the statement released by Moscow and Washington earlier in the day. She hopes that Russia will exert pressure on Damascus forcing it to implement undertaken commitments. Without this, the resumption of a peace political process in Geneva will be impossible, she said with confidence.
The High Negotiations Committee is a coalition of Syrian opposition forces formed in Riyadh in 2015 and backed by Saudi Arabia.
"To my mind, a joint statement demonstrates a certain political will and it inspires," she said. "We will closely watch how it is implemented on the ground."
Implementation of provisions of a joint statement on Syria where a civil war has been raging for the sixth year will "certainly, create a more favorable atmosphere for us to come back to Geneva," Kodmani said. In April her delegation made a pause at the intra-Syria talks in the Swiss capital brokered by UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura.
With the help of pressure on official Damascus, Kodmani said Russia should get the Syrian government to make shifts in three aspects: to cease governmental troops’ attacks on moderate rebel groups that observe the regime of cessation of hostilities, to lift the blockade of cities and to stop using hunger as a weapon and also to reach a progress in a situation with dozens of thousands people jailed at governmental prisons.
The situation in Syria would not change without Moscow’s pressure, Kodmani said, and accordingly, no conditions for the return to the negotiations table would be created.
"We do not believe that the regime wants any changes," she went on to say. "We feel that it will agree to fulfil undertaken commitments just under pressure. And so we ask Russia to select a political partner for us, who will be capable of holding these political negotiations."
On Monday Russia and the United States as co-chairs of the International Syria Support Group (ISSG) released a joint statement on the Syria crisis. The document outlines the key problems Moscow and Washington are determined to work on jointly so as to give an impetus to the Syrian settlement, including the ceasefire, deliveries of humanitarian aid and organization of a political process.