Syrian FM says Geneva II should focus on combating terrorism
Syria's Foreign Minister Walid al- Moallem said Thursday that the upcoming Geneva II peace conference on Syria must focus on combating terrorism in order for it to be successful, Xinhua reported.
"The Geneva conference should focus on combating terrorism and compelling the countries which are supporting the armed groups to stop funding, arming and hosting these groups because ending terrorism in Syria is the basis for the success of any political solution," the head of Syria's diplomacy said during his meeting with the visiting Indian acting assistant minister of external affairs, Sandeep Kumar.
During the meeting, al-Moallem explained the war launched by the "armed terrorist groups," whose members came from over 80 countries, adding that the unilateral economic sanctions adopted by the European Union and the U.S. against the Syrian people have crucially contributed to aggravating the living situation in Syria, according to SANA.
The Syrian government said it is subject to foreign-backed terrorism, particularly with the growing presence of al-Qaida and jihadist-linked groups fighting to topple the Syrian administration on Syria's soil.
For his part, Kumar said that India is following up the situation in Syria and it is working with a number of countries for the restoration of security and stability to it.
He stressed that combating terrorism entails the end of funding and arming the gunmen, adding that India supports the idea that combating terrorism should be the basis for political solution.
The Geneva II peace conference aims to seek a political solution to the conflict through a comprehensive agreement between the government and the opposition for the full implementation of the Geneva communique, adopted at the Geneva I conference in 2012.
The communique, which has been endorsed by the UN Security Council, lays out key steps to end the violence through the formation of a transitional government.
Both the government and the opposition said they would attend the conference. However, both have expressed skepticism about the success of the conference.