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President Bashar Al-Assad: the Man of Peace (1)

The realization of the just and comprehensive peace has ever been the noble objective of H.E. President Bashar Al-Assad. Actually, all the measures and political moves taken by the Syrian leadership aim at the restoration of stability, security and realization of the peace. This strategy of peace has been characterized and reflected by H.E. President Al-Assad through:

Syria's belief in just and comprehensive peace doesn't mean relinquishing a speck of soil or a drop of water.

The Syrian Arab Golan will remain Arab and Syrian and will return to the homeland Syria.''

We have to believe that only peace can help us.

We have desperation especially regarding the peace process because we always say no to anything which is not methodical. When it is methodical, we will be ready to move right away and this evening. It does not need preparation."

Peace is when you have normal relations, when you bury the hatchet and when people can deal with each other. This needs lots of steps and a lot of support. At that time, the arbiter should perhaps have a more important role than during the negotiations.

There is one reason preventing the achievement of peace, which is occupation. So, occupation is the cause of all wars, First the English, then the French, and now Israel. In short, Israel must apply all the UN Security Council resolutions and return the occupied lands to our people.

We always express our opinion clearly and publicly and affirm that we want peace and the agreement; but we cannot achieve this only from one side, and the other side must participate until now, there is no partner of this kind. The result is that the Israelis chose a government that advocates extremism, and this government doesn't bring peace.

The absence of peace, due to the Israeli policies and despite Syria's relentless efforts to achieve it, aggravates tension and undermines Syria's endeavors for development and economic prosperity.

Only the peace, based on the international legitimacy resolutions and the land-for-peace principle which restores the rights to their legitimate owners guarantees security, stability and prosperity in the region and the world.

The continued situation of insecurity and instability that afflicted the Middle East for decades as a result of the absence of peace will only lead to more wars, unrest, and negative repercussions on the rest of the world, thus necessitating a serious stand by all nations and peoples who are eager for peace to put an end to the Arab-Israeli conflict in our region.

The cooperation and prosperity aspired by our peoples will still be unattainable as long as tension and instability continue in the Middle East due to Israel's continued rejection of the land-for-peace principle and the UN resolutions which stipulate for restoring the occupied Arab territories to their legitimate owners and establishing an independent Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital, as well as for guaranteeing the Palestinian refugees' right to return and ending the Israeli occupation of the Syrian Golan and the Lebanese territories.

Israel is not ready and unwilling to offer anything to the peace process. It has been following a certain tactic to persuade the world that the process is unconvincing and doomed to failure.

Syria reiterates its willingness in the just peace and consolidating bases of security and stability in this vital region of the world, and this will not be realized except by the restoration of the whole usurped rights according to the international relevant resolutions, the first factor of peace is preserving dignity, sovereignty and not abandoning any bit of soil or drop of water.

The peace cannot be realized unless it is a comprehensive one; we cannot talk about peace on the Syrian track without the Palestinian track.

Syria has always worked for peace in the Middle East and the Arabs launched an initiative in 2002 to end the Arab-Israeli conflict.

Syria will continue working for achieving just and comprehensive peace based on the international legitimacy resolutions till the restoration of all its rights, particularly the occupied Syrian Golan.

Syria has always believed that realizing peace in the Middle East is the only way to achieve security, stability and prosperity, not only in the Middle East, but also in other parts of the world.

We reject surrender. We accept only the real peace that gives the rights back to their owners. We don't support resistance because we are seeking conflicts or what they call violence. We don't know hatred even toward our aggressors, but at the same time we know determination and the difference between hatred and firmness. We are firm toward our causes without feeling hatred. Therefore, resistance is not terrorism. Terrorism for us is the Israeli practices, policies and intentions toward the Arab people and the peace process.

What we have now as reference is mainly the United Nations or Security Council resolution.  It’s very important reference but it’s not defined.  It talks about the land occupied in ’67 but how can you define this land?  Israel talking about a different line, how can you define this line, I mean?  We wanted in that inquisition to define the line through one point and Israel wanted to define its security requirements.  So if we define these two things and we move to the direct negotiation, whenever you have arbiter this arbiter can play its role only through this paper, not like what happened in the ‘90’s when some politicians, some of them with a good will spoiled the process with good will but with enthusiasm but less with a lack of knowledge.  And others, self-serving politicians, spoiled it for their own interests.  Now we had this paper, anyone who wants to play a role, any mediator, any official, any arbiter, should play it through this paper and this is where we can succeed, not to have 19 wasteful years.''

It’s always time for peace.  We don’t say it’s now time or it’s not time for peace.  It’s always time for peace.

If Israel is ready to return the Golan, we cannot say no to a peace treaty. However, only a comprehensive solution can guarantee true peace. An agreement limited to Syria and Israel will leave the Palestinian issue unresolved. Rather than peace, it will be a truce. With some five million Palestinian refugees scattered around the Arab world, tension will remain strong. There is popular solidarity with the Palestinians. They will keep fighting for their rights.

We will remain free in our national decision-making and sovereign in our international relations and our resistant course to achieve just and comprehensive peace according to international legitimacy resolutions that stipulate for Israeli withdrawal from the occupied Arab lands up to the June 4th 1967 line. Those who bet on other than that are delusional. Hardships make us more resilient, conspiracies make us stronger, and pressure causes it to adhere more to our standards and rights that cannot be liquidated or marginalized.

Peace for us is to have normal relations, like between Syria and any other country in the world. So having peace treaty only with Syria could be only one step, but cannot be peace. That is why comprehensive peace is very important. This is the real solution.

'Whoever wants to talk about peace must speak of the withdrawal from the land and the return of the rights and not of settlements.

I believe that even the countries whose governments stand by Israel understand the Syrian viewpoint. It has been proven for all that Israel is the problem as well as it is the obstructer. The problem is no longer what does Syria say. The problem which we discuss with everybody is how we can convince Israel to move towards peace. We agree on the UN Security Council resolutions. They know that peace will not be achieved without the restoration of the whole land without any conditions.. This issue is non-negotiable and what remains is how the other countries could convince Israel.

The peace process needs parties, sponsor, reference; and the basic role lies in the parties; and if there are no parties willing in peace, we can't ask Europe or the US to play a role. Europe today can assume that through persuading the parties to play a role in the peace process. Syria is ready; they have to work in this regard on the Israeli side, and Latin America play this role and this broker could negotiate with the US which is one of the sponsors to launch this process.

Peace is not about visits is not about protocol or official visits it's about the will when you don't have a partner you don't waste your time with these pro forma actions so we have to be realistic it is about the land it's about Israel withdrawing from our occupied  land.


Dr. Mohammad Abdo Al-Ibrahim