Iran, Russia, Turkey Voice Support for Syria Constitutional Committee
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – The foreign ministers of Iran, Turkey and Russia welcomed the opening of Syria’s Constitutional Committee meetings as a result of the contribution made by the Astana Peace Process guarantors, stressing that the Committee should exclude foreign interference.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, Russia’s Sergei Lavrov and Turkey’s Mevlut Cavusoglu issued a joint statement at the conclusion of a trilateral meeting and consultations with the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Syria Geir O. Pedersen in Geneva on Tuesday.
Following is the text of the joint statement by the guarantors of the Astana Peace Process:
1. Reaffirmed the strong commitment of the Astana guarantors to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of the Syrian Arab Republic and emphasized that these principles should be respected by all sides. They reiterated their strong determination to combat terrorism in all forms and manifestations and to disrupt separatist agendas in the Syrian territory;
2. Welcomed the formation the Constitutional Committee and its convening in Geneva on 30 October 2019 as a result of the decisive contribution of the Astana guarantors and the implementation of the decisions of the Syrian National Dialogue Congress in Sochi and appreciated in this regard the efforts of the UN Secretary‑General’s Special Envoy for Syria;
3. Expressed their conviction that the launch of the Constitutional Committee proves that there could be no military solution to the Syrian conflict and reaffirmed their commitment to advance viable and lasting Syrian-led and Syrian‑owned, UN‑facilitated political process in line with the UN Security Council resolution 2254;
4. Reaffirmed their determination to support the work of the Constitutional Committee through continuous interaction with the Syrian parties and the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Syria in order to ensure its sustainable and effective work;
5. Expressed their view that the work of the Constitutional Committee should be governed by a sense of compromise and constructive engagement without foreign interference and externally imposed timelines aimed at reaching general agreement of its members that would enable the outcome to receive the widest possible support by the Syrian people;
6. Stressed the importance of the broader settlement process moving forward to increase humanitarian assistance to all Syrians throughout the country without preconditions and discrimination, to facilitate safe and voluntary return of refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) to their original places of residence in Syria as well as to build confidence and trust between the Syrian parties.
Geneva, 29 October 2019”
The meetings of Syria’s Constitutional Committee began with a plenary session involving 50 delegates each from three blocs – Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s administration, the Turkish-backed political opposition movement and civil society representatives.