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Wednesday, March 30, 2016

‘Syrian Army’s battlefield successes speed up political settlement’ – Assad

‘Syrian Army’s battlefield successes speed up political settlement’ – Assad

Syria's President Bashar al-Assad © SANA
Many countries would like to see the Syrian Army defeated so Damascus would become more concessive, President Bashar Assad told RIA Novosti in an exclusive interview. The army’s advances are in fact a major contribution to eventual peace, he said.
The Syrian Arab Army’s success on the battlefield, with Russia’s support, is going to speed up a political settlement in Syria, not hinder it, Assad believes.
Putin calls up Assad to congratulate Syrian forces on retaking Palmyra http://on.rt.com/78b3 
“Because there are those who accuse us and Russia of [hindering the peace process], when trying to present Russia's intervention aimed at countering terrorism as an intervention to support the president or the Syrian government, and thus, as an obstacle in the way of the political process,” Assad told the director general of Rossiya Segodnya (incorporating Sputnik and RIA Novosti news agencies), Dmitry Kiselev.

Assad named Saudi Arabia, Turkey, France and the United Kingdom among countries that “are counting on our defeat on the battlefield in order to impose their conditions at the negotiations.
“So these military actions and successes will lead to the acceleration of the political settlement, and not prevent it,” Assad said.
Surprise Syrian showdown: 'Pentagon-backed rebels fighting CIA-backed rebels' (Op-Edge) http://on.rt.com/78j2 
Throughout all five years of the conflict Damascus has always been ready to negotiate and remained flexible, even when dealing with unfriendly opponents, putting everything at stake to find a compromise, years before Russia intervened in the Syrian crisis militarily.
’s ‘surprise’  withdrawal welcomed as signal of 'true peace process' http://on.rt.com/76yj 
“The goal is not to miss a single chance for settlement, without [first] trying it,” Assad said, adding that “If [you] go back to the policy of the Syrian state five years ago, we responded to all the initiatives, without exception, coming from all sides - even if they were not friendly.
“We went to Geneva and continue to show flexibility,” Assad said.
Syrian opposition ‘not against’ direct talks with government http://on.rt.com/7717 

“The support provided by friends of Syria and the military achievements of the Syrian Army — all this will lead to an acceleration of the political settlement, and not the opposite. We have not changed our position, not before the support from Russia nor after,” the president stressed.
After the interview, Kiselev commented to a Russian TV channel that “President Assad is in great shape – both intellectually and emotionally.
“He is inspired by the victory of his army and the retake of Palmyra, speaking ironically about Western leaders as if they swallowed their tongues and did not notice this event,” Kiselev said.
The Syrian leader “is ready for the so-called political transition, [and] approaches it responsibly and creatively,” Kiselev added.
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