Aggressive US Steps in Syria Hamper Peaceful Solutions Efforts: Lavrov

MOSCOW- US missile strike on a military base in Syria has hindered the efforts to reach a political settlement, and possibly, this has been done on purpose, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said after talks with his Senegalese counterpart Mankeur Ndiaye on Monday, Itar Tass reported.

The sides discussed the growing terrorist threat on the African continent and in the world in general, Lavrov said. "We again stated the need to consolidate efforts of the entire international community in the fight against this universal evil, as Russian President Vladimir Putin said some 18 months ago addressing the UN General Assembly," he said.

Serbia Wants to Buy S-300 Missile Systems, Talking with Russia and Belarus, Says Serbian President

Serbia needs two divisions of Russian-made S-300 surface-to-air missile systems and a command post to protect its airspace, Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic has said. A possible purchase is apparently being discussed with Russia and Belarus.

Vucic told reporters on Sunday that he has personally discussed buying S-300s with Russian President Vladimir Putin and Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko.

“There is no agreement concerning the S-300. I mentioned it during the talks with President Putin, and we talked about it. We discussed it with President Lukashenko as well,” he said.

Massive Bombs Will Fail to Guarantee US Security

A senior Iranian official has slammed as illegitimate the recent measure taken by Washington to drop a massive non-nuclear bomb on Afghanistan, stressing that such measures would fail to make the US secure, Press T.V reported.

“Bombing people and countries [by the US] will never enhance this country’s national security,” Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Shamkhani said in a meeting with Azerbaijan’s Defense Minister Lieutenant General Zakir Hasanov in Tehran on Sunday.

Russia Wants No Repeat of Iraqi Scenario in Syria

MOSCOW— Russia does not want the scenario of US invasion in Iraq to occur in Syria and regards attempts to invent pretexts for invasions in sovereign states as unacceptable, Speaker of the Russian Federation Council, the upper house of Russia's parliament, Valentina Matvienko said on Sunday, according to Sputnik.

She pointed out that the US missile strike in Syria was a serious violation of the international law and an act of aggression against a sovereign state.

"There was an example of western coalition's invasion in Iraq  under a far-fetched pretext of alleged existence of chemical weapons [there]. And we know what the outcome was. We do not want repeat of such scenarios and do not want [anyone] looking for such pretexts to invade sovereign states," Matvienko told reporters.

BRICS: UN Charter and International Law Should Be Respected

 Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa have issued a joint BRICS statement condemning military action in Syria that has not been authorized by the United Nations. The statement also calls for respect of international law, territorial integrity and sovereignty. 

Some highlights from the statement:

BRICS Special Envoys on Middle East expressed their concern about internal crises that have emerged in a number of states in the region in recent years. They firmly advocated that these crises should be resolved in accordance with the international law and UN Charter, without resorting to force or external interference and through establishing broad national dialogue with due respect for independence, territorial integrity and sovereignty of the countries of the region. The participants emphasized the legitimacy of the aspirations of the peoples of the region to enjoy full political and social freedoms and for respect to human rights.

They strongly condemned recent several attacks, against some BRICS countries, including that in the Russian Federation. BRICS members stand for consolidating international efforts to combat the global threat of terrorism. They stressed that counter-terrorism measures should be undertaken on the firm basis of international law under the aegis of the UN and its Security Council.

In the course of the meeting, the role of the UN Security Council as the international body bearing the primary responsibility for maintaining international peace and security was underlined. It was also stressed that military interventions that have not been authorized by the Security Council are incompatible with the UN Charter and unacceptable.

BRICS Special Envoys expressed their deep concern with regard to the continuing violence in Syria, deterioration of humanitarian situation and growing threat of international terrorism and extremism in that country.

The participants confirmed their strong support for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Syria and the need for a peaceful solution, led by the Syrians, to the conflict.

They supported all efforts towards a political and diplomatic solution in Syria through talks based on Resolution 2254 of the United Nations Security Council. They welcomed the three rounds of talks held in Astana and the outcome of fifth round of talks in Geneva.

They acknowledged that Astana talks paved the way for resumption of Geneva talks. They expressed resolve for renewed and committed efforts to find a political and diplomatic solution in Syria. In this regard, the efforts of the Special Envoy of the UN Secretary General Staffan de Mistura aimed at resumption of Geneva process were welcomed. The efforts of BRICS countries in providing humanitarian aid to Syria were welcomed. They called for continuing humanitarian assistance to Syria by BRICS countries and collaborating in the reconstruction of Syria.

While strongly condemning terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, they called upon all Syrians to join hands in the face of this dangerous threat and urged the international community to strictly abide by all the obligations pursuant to various relevant UNSC resolutions.

Dr. Mohammad Abdo Al-Ibrahim

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Russia to Insist at OPCW, UN on Sending Inspectors to Syria for Investigation into Alleged Chemical Attack

MOSCOW- Russia will insist not only at the Organization for Prohibition of Chemical Weapon (OPCW), but also at the UN on urgent sending of inspectors for investigation into the incident with alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria, Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Saturday after a meeting with Qatar's Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al-Thani, Itar Tass reported.

"We consider it absolutely necessary to have thorough, objective and unbiased professional investigation," he said. "We shall both at OPCW in New York and at the UN insist on urgent sending of inspectors both to the side of the accident and to the Shairat airfield, where, as Western experts claim, shells were filled with chemical substances."

Iran, Brazil, India Should Be Included in Any Investigation into Alleged Chemical Attack in Syria: Ryabkov

Russian Deputy Foreign minister Sergey Ryabkov has said Moscow is “skeptical” of the work being carried out by an international organization to probe an alleged chemical attack in Syria, saying Iran, Brazil, and India should be included in any investigation into the purported attack.

A fact-finding mission has been set up by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) and has been sent to Syria to interview survivors and gather bio-metric samples from the site of the alleged chemical attack on April 4, Press TV reported.

Syria, Russia, Iran to Continue Joint Action to Clean Entire Syrian Territory from Terrorism

MOSCOW, (ST)- The foreign ministers of Syria, Russia and Iran have stressed that the American aggression on Syria is a flagrant violation of the International Law and the UN Charter, urging independent and transparent investigation into the alleged use of chemical weapon in the Syrian town of Khan Sheikhoun in Idleb countryside.

In a joint press conference on Friday with Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and the Iranian Foreign Minister Javad  Zarif, Syria's Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem stressed that the tripartite meeting was a strong message to the world following the US aggression on Syria.

 Al-Moallem said that yesterday he discussed with Lavrov different aspects of action to enhance the effectiveness of struggle against terrorism in addition to consolidating the support provided by the Russian Federation to the Syrian Arab Republic in different domains. He added that today he had talks with Iran's Zarif also over the Tehran's support for Syria in the face of the terrorist war imposed on the country.