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October 21, 2015 ~ KREMLIN.ru ~ President of Syria Bashar Assad made a working visit to Moscow on October 20. Russian-Syrian talks in narrow and expanded format with top Russian officials took place at the Kremlin.

Vladimir Putin: Mr President,

Let me wish you a warm welcome to Moscow. Despite the dramatic situation in your country, you have responded to our request and come here to Russia, and we thank you for this.

We took the decision upon your request to provide effective aid to the Syrian people in fighting the international terrorists who have unleashed a genuine war against Syria. The Syrian people have been practically alone in putting up resistance and fighting these international terrorists for several years now, and have suffered great losses. Lately though, there have been some major positive results in this fight.

The attempts by international terrorists to bring whole swathes of territory in the Middle East under their control and destabilize the situation in the region raise legitimate concerns in many countries around the world. This is a matter of concern for Russia too, given that sadly, people from the former Soviet Union, around 4,000 people at least, have taken up arms and are fighting on Syrian territory against the government forces. Of course, we cannot let these people gain combat experience and go through ideological indoctrination and then return to Russia.

On the question of a settlement in Syria, our position is that positive results in military operations will lay the base for then working out a long-term settlement based on a political process that involves all political forces, ethnic and religious groups. Ultimately, it is the Syrian people alone who must have the deciding voice here.

Syria is Russia’s friend and we are ready to make our contribution not only to the military operations and the fight against terrorism, but also to the political process. We would do this, of course, in close contact with the other global powers and with the countries in the region that want to see a peaceful settlement to this conflict.

Once again, I wish you welcome, Mr President.

President of Syria Bashar al-Assad (retranslated): Thank you very much, Mr President.

First of all, I want to express our tremendous gratitude to the Russian leadership and people for the help they are providing Syria. Thank you for supporting Syria’s unity and independence. Most important of all is that this is being done within the framework of international law.

I must say that the political steps the Russian Federation has been taking since the start of the crisis made it possible to prevent events in Syria from taking an even more tragic turn. If it were not for your actions and decisions, the terrorism that is spreading through the region now would have made even greater gains and spread to even wider territories. You have confirmed your course of action by joining in the military operations as part of a common front in the fight against terrorism.

Of course, we all know that any military action must be followed by political steps. Of course, our common goal is to bring about the vision the Syrian people have of their own country’s future.

We must be particularly aware that military strikes against the terrorists are essential above all because we must fight terrorism, and also because terrorism is a real obstacle on the road to reaching a political settlement. Of course, the entire nation wants to take part in deciding the country’s fate, and not just the government.

I want to thank the Russian people once more for the help you are giving Syria and express the hope that we will vanquish terrorism and continue working together to rebuild our country economically and politically and ensure peaceful life for everyone.


President al-Assad: “Syrian people have been confronting terrorists ‘practically single-handedly’ for years… involvement of the Russian Air Force in the operations against terrorism in Syria has helped in halting the spread of the terrorist organizations”

Moscow, 21/10/2015 ~ (SANA, M. Nassr/ H. Said) ~ President Bashar al-Assad held talks with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin on Tuesday in the Russian capital Moscow.  President al-Assad’s visit to Moscow came upon an invitation by the Russian President.

Continuing the military operations against terrorism in Syria supported by the Russian Air Force was the main issue on the table, and President Putin was informed by President al-Assad about the situation in Syria and the Syrian army’s plans.

President al-Assad said the involvement of the Russian Air Force in the operations against terrorism in Syria has helped in halting the spread of the terrorist organizations, noting that the military operation aims at eliminating terrorism that is hindering the political solution.

The Russian air operations, he affirmed, are conducted in line with the international law, hoping that cooperation between Syria and Russia will continue to rebuild Syria in the various fields.

He expressed the Syrian people’s thanks for the Russian support in the fight against terrorism, stressing that political steps are to follow military action.

President al-Assad stressed the need for stopping all forms of support to the terrorist organizations and allowing the Syrian people to decide their country’s future by themselves.


Russian President Vladimir Putin and Syrian President Bashar Assad at a meeting at the Kremlin. From right: Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu and Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. (© Alexei Druzhinin / RIA Novosti)

The Russian President said the Syrian people have been confronting terrorists “practically single-handedly” for years, withstanding considerable casualties. Lately, they have achieved serious and positive results in this fight, he added.

Syria is a country friendly to Russia, President Putin said, adding that Moscow is ready to assist Syria not only with fighting terrorism but also with the political process in cooperation with other international powers to reach a political solution.

He said eventually reaching a long-term settlement will be on the basis of a political process with all the political, religious and ethnic forces involved.

“The decisive word, without any doubt, must belong solely to the Syrian people”, President Putin stressed.

A bilateral meeting was also held during the summit, where all aspects of the Syrian-Russian relations were addressed.

President Putin held a business dinner in the honor of President al-Assad attended by Russian Prime Minister, Foreign Minister and Minister of Defense in addition to a number of Russian senior officials.

President Vladimir Putin and President Bashar Assad-20151020

President Putin pratically committed himself that Syria will be the graveyard for all terrorist gangs: “At least 4,000 terrorists from the former Soviet republics are fighting against the Syrian army, and we cannot allow them to appear on Russian territory with all the combat experience and ideological brainwashing they have gone through”.

(RT, 21/10/2015) ~ Russian President Vladimir Putin and Syrian President Bashar Assad held talks in Moscow on Tuesday. The Syrian leader said Russia’s actions have prevented the terrorists from seizing larger areas in his country.

“Yesterday evening Syrian President Bashar Assad arrived in Moscow for a working visit,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Wednesday. “President [Putin] was informed in detail by his Syrian counterpart about the current state of affairs in Syria and the long-range plan”.

The two leaders conducted lengthy negotiations, which then continued in the presence of Russia’s top policymakers.

Vladimir Putin said that the Syrian people have been confronting terrorists “practically single-handedly” for years, withstanding considerable casualties. Lately, they have achieved serious and positive results in this fight, he added.

The terrorists’ attempts to destabilize the situation in the Middle East arouse deep concern in Russia because “unfortunately, people from the former Soviet republics, at least 4,000 of them, are fighting against the Syrian army,” the Russian leader said. “Naturally, we cannot allow them to appear on Russian territory with all the combat experience and ideological brainwashing they have gone through”.

Syria is a country friendly to Russia, and Moscow is ready not only to assist with fighting terrorism, but also in reaching a peaceful political settlement to the Syrian conflict in cooperation with other global and regional powers, Putin said.

“The decisive word, without any doubt, must belong solely to the Syrian people,” Vladimir Putin stressed.

Bashar Assad thanked Russia for the support provided to Syria in fighting for its sovereignty and unity.

“Terrorists would have occupied far greater territories if it were not for Russia’s military assistance,” President Assad said, adding that political steps are due to follow military action. “The only aim for all of us should be what the Syrian people want as a future for their country.”

Once the terrorists are defeated, it will take a united effort to rebuild the country economically and politically and to ensure peaceful coexistence for all, Assad concluded.

“We are seeing Russia take the role of leadership on the international stage,” geopolitical analyst Patrick Henningsen told RT, stressing that western efforts to defeat Islamic State have been “dragging on with no conclusive results.”

Russia has “basically gatecrashed an underground party that has been going on for four years,” Henningsen said. “Countries like the US, Turkey, Jordan and NATO allies like the UK and France have been able to operate in the shadows. Russia has basically barged in, switched on the lights and said the party’s over.

“They are very upset in Washington and are still throwing temper tantrums, saying Russia has made a horrible move,” Henningsen said, adding that the US would like very much to see Russia in another Afghanistan.

Yet the Russian military operation in Syria is “very different from Afghanistan” because Russia has been “invited in by the legal democratically elected government in Damascus.”

Henningsen said that if the West was really serious about dealing with the terrorist threat, they would have worked with the Assad government because that is the ground force and they have the most ground intelligence.

“This is what Russia is doing. It has just gone in and has worked with the key player they needed to work with.”

Henningsen added that with the 22,000 bombs that were dropped on Islamic State by the western anti-ISIS alliance in the last 13 months, Islamic State should have disappeared already.

Middle East expert Willy Van Damme said the US is “in a quagmire and their friends, the whole Western-Turkey-Saudi alliance is in a complete mess and they are arguing amongst themselves, they don’t trust each other and everyone has their own idea.”

He added: “Some want to divide up Syria, others want to conquer it like the French, Turkey wants part of the north of Syria to incorporated in a sort of Ottoman Empire with “Sultan” [Recep Tayyip] Erdogan.”

Daniele Ganser, a peace researcher and expert on NATO, said the Pentagon’s strategy of fighting against ISIS and simultaneously supporting militants fighting against Assad isn’t working.

“The Pentagon always says, ‘We did not want to drop any weapons to ISIS,’ and they always say they do not support the radical enemies of Assad – ‘We support the moderate enemies of Assad,’” Genser said. “This has always been a very difficult distinction to, make and we have people in Iraq who came forward many years ago and said, ‘There are weapons being dropped by the British and the US’ and these went into the hands of ISIS.”

The US “always made this very strange mix of communications by saying, ‘Yes, we want to topple Assad,’ and, ‘We also want to fight IS,’” he said. “This was always bewildering to any peace researcher or historian who looked into the situation, and I do not think they had a clear strategy in Syria.”

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R E L A T E D :

1~ Russia, US sign cooperation deal on Syria airstrikes

2 ~ ‘Assad doesn’t have to leave tomorrow, can be part of transitional process’ – US State Department

3 ~ ‘MidEast terrorists recruit fighters from ex-Soviet states, seek to expand into other regions’ – Putin

4 ~ VIDEO YOU MUST WATCH! Vladimir Putin on terrorism, Syria and Russia’s foreign policy

(for English subtitles click on ‘CC’ and ‘Setting’)

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