Russia to call for Syrian dialogue
Russia is reportedly planning to call for dialogue in Syria and forming a government that will be a prelude for parliamentarian and presidential elections, the pan-Arab al-Mayadeen said Sunday, citing what it called "well-informed sources.", Xinhua reported.
The report said "Moscow will call for a dialogue in Syria and the parties of the dialogue will form a government, which will later form committees that will prepare for parliamentarian elections within 18 months."
"After the parliamentarian elections, presidential elections will be organized and will be opened to whoever wants to run for presidency," the report added.
Moreover, the report said Russian President Vladimir Putin, who recently met with his Syria counterpart al-Assad in Moscow, has "presented full guarantees that the presidency status in Syria will be untouched until the date of the presidential elections," meaning that all talks of the Syrian opposition and their Western backers about the departure of Assad as a prelude to the political process are meaningless.
The report further said that Assad will accept to embrace armed opposition factions in the ranks of the Syrian army, or hold dialogue with them, on condition of shifting their alliance and move their weapons against the terrorist groups.
Earlier in the day, Assad reportedly told a visiting Russian lawmaker on that he was ready to participate in any early polls "when necessary" and after the victory on the terrorist groups in Syria.
Visiting Russian communist party MP Aleksandr Yushenko said the Syrian president agreed to hold preliminary elections on condition that the move has the backing of the people.
Yushenko, who met with Assad on Sunday along with a delegation of Russian lawmakers, said Assad "is ready to discuss amendments to the constitution, hold parliamentary elections and, if the people of Syria deem necessary, expressed a readiness to hold presidential elections," but only "after the victory over terrorism on the territory of Syria and the country's liberation."
The president stance apparently collaborate with the Russian efforts to push the wheels of the stalemated political process in Syria, in tandem with the ongoing military campaign against the terror groups.
Meanwhile, the state news agency SANA said Assad told the Russian delegation that eliminating the terrorist groups in Syria should lead to the political solution in Syria.
Assad also voiced appreciation to the Russian air force support to the Syrian army in several Syrian frontlines, saying the Russian stance writes new history because the war will determine the future of the region and the world, adding that the victory on terrorism will not only protect Syria, but all world countries.
A day earlier, Syria's parliament speaker Mohammad Jihad al-Laham hailed Russian military intervention in Syria as the "sole legitimate" way to fight the terrorist groups in Syria, according to the state news agency SANA.
Al-Laham said the coordination between Syrian and Russian military forces in ground and air operations have started yielding "big results" in defeating terrorist groups in Syria.
He added the two sides, plus Iran, will "also work on moving on toward the political solution in tandem with fighting terrorism through activating dialogue with the national opposition."
The head of the Russian delegation, Sergey Gavrilov, said they will discuss the mechanisms that could enable Russia to take part in the reconstruction process in Syria after the crisis ends and ways to increase the level of humanitarian and financial aid to Syria.
Russia started air raiding militant groups' posts in Syria on Sept. 30, a move hailed by Syrian officials as an efficient step in the war against terrorism.