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Khatib: No Russian Proposal to Resolve the Syrian Crisis | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Former President of the Syrian National Coalition Ahmed Moaz Al-Khatib (Reuters)

Beirut, Riyadh – Former President of the Syrian National Coalition Ahmed Moaz Al-Khatib denied media reports on a proposal put forward by Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov to resolve the Syrian crisis during a bilateral meeting held in Doha on Tuesday.

In comments to Asharq al-Awsat newspaper, Khatib denied claims that Bogdanov suggested the formation of different political, security, military and economic committees by both warring parties, to hold peace discussions that would pave the way for an intra-Syrian solution to the crisis under an interim leadership of head of Syrian regime Bashar al-Assad.

The Syrian official said that the Russian envoy “did not present any new proposal, but only listened to our views to the current situation.”

“We have also expressed our strong objection to air strikes conducted by Russian warplanes on the Syrian territories which only benefit ISIS,” he added.

Khatib went on to say that chaos was currently prevailing over Syria in the absence of any clear vision to resolve the crisis. He noted that regional countries and world forces were only seeking to fulfill their own interests.

“Moscow did not present any comprehensive solution,” he said, adding: “It is instead giving suggestions to which we strongly object, such as defeating Assad through elections.”

“We all know how such elections are held under Assad’s regime,” he noted.

The former president of the National Coalition denounced the campaign launched against him for holding a joint meeting with Bogdanov.

“Communication with opponents and enemies is part of continuous work to resolve the crisis,” he said.

Meanwhile, Russia Today reported on Wednesday that Bogdanov discussed with Khatib the situation in Syria.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, the Russian foreign affairs ministry said the meeting between Bogdanov and Khatib “saw a candid and detailed exchange of views on the military-political and humanitarian situation in Syria and reaffirmed that the only real option was to pursue a political settlement of the long-running crisis in Syria through inclusive intra-Syrian dialogue based on the Geneva Communique of June 30, 2012, the relevant UN Security Council resolutions, and the International Syria Support Group’s decisions.”

“The participants underscored the importance of maintaining and strengthening the ceasefire in Syria while continuing the uncompromising fight against the terrorist organizations not covered by the ceasefire provisions,” the statement added.