28 December 2012

Egypt: FM - Egypt, Russia Reject Any Foreign Intervention to Defuse Syrian Crisis

Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr asserted on Friday 28/12/2012 Egypt and Russia reject any foreign intervention to defuse the Syrian crisis. "We believe in Egypt that the change will happen undoubtedly in Syria. But that change should safeguard the unity of Syria," Amr said at a press conference with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in Moscow.

Minister Amr said Egypt is holding talks with Syrian opposition groups on Syria's democratic transition. "The stance of Egypt was clear since the crisis erupted two years ago. We reject any outside intervention in Syria," he said.

"It is hard that the current leadership in Syria to have a place in the future of Syria because of the current killings," he said.

On the Palestinian issue, Amr denounced Israel's continuing settlement building in occupied Palestinian lands.

"What Israel is doing destroys any peace opportunity in the region and does not help reach a solution based on negotiations with the Palestinian side," he said.

The Israeli-Palestinian peace talks have been stalled for years and there is little expectation on either side that they will resume in the coming year.

The Palestinian side is ready to resume talks with Israel providing that Israel halts settlement building in the occupied Palestinian territories, he added.

For his part, the Russian top diplomat said that the Syrian side has shown readiness to start dialogue.

He added that Syrian president's stepping down is an affair to be decided by the Syrian people not any other party.

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