Russian space budget may grow this yearScience & Space May 26, 20:48
Moscow hopes London High Court will deliver judgement on Ukraine’s debt to Russia soonBusiness & Economy May 26, 20:21
Hungarian top diplomat: EU must discuss anti-Russian sanctionsWorld May 26, 19:56
Russian, French top diplomats discuss preparations for Putin’s visit to FranceRussian Politics & Diplomacy May 26, 19:47
Moscow comments on Tallinn’s move to expel Russian diplomatsRussian Politics & Diplomacy May 26, 19:43
WADA: Legendary Isinbayeva suits role of ambassador for clean sports in RussiaSport May 26, 19:33
Russia working on advanced air defense systemMilitary & Defense May 26, 19:17
WADA receives Russia’s new national anti-doping planSport May 26, 19:14
Moldova’s ruling pro-European coalition breaks upWorld May 26, 19:12
MOSCOW, January 13. /TASS/. Syria’s army should assume a neutral stance when the country’s future is determined during the transition period, representative of the Syrian armed opposition, former Syrian armed forces General Mustafa Al-Sheikh told a news conference on Friday.
"The mediators between us (the government and opposition - TASS) have been working for seven months now, their task is to convey general information about what is happening," he said. "We, the military, are nowhere near politics. However, we do realize that the political process is very important. We need to use the meeting in Astana to reach a settlement."
The retired general noted that he discussed the role of Syria’s armed forces during the transition period at a meeting with Russian Presidential Envoy for the Middle East and North Africa and Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov on January 10. "They should take a neutral stand and stay out of politics," he noted. "The army’s core task is preserving the borders and the country’s unity. That’s how we see the role of the Syrian army."
General Mustafa Sheikh said he does not consider Russia as an invader and friendly ties with Russia will be maintained also if the current regime leaves.
"Russia is not an invader or an occupant country, I believe in Russia," Sheikh said. "Sometimes Russia carries out bombings, but they are aimed against certain groups. Russia is not a colonial state, our relations will be maintained, the regime will leave and our friendship will remain."
"Let the Russian forces enter Syria, any corner, and we are ready to receive them if they come to establish peace," the opposition member said. "We want freedom and a secular state, nothing else. If the army comes to set these values then we only welcome this," he said.