Palestinian unity the only guarantee to regain rights – Syrian President


Damascus : President Bashar al-Assad has said that Syria considers the restoration of Palestinian national unity as the only guarantee through which the Palestinian people can regain their rights and boost the Palestinian stance at peace negotiations.

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Al-Assad, receiving President of the Palestinian National Authority Mahmoud Abbas Sunday, stressed that the Palestinian issue was and still is the main issue for Syria and the Arabs, saying that “Syria will not spare any efforts to support the Palestinians till reaching the establishment of their independent state with Jerusalem as its capital.”

Talks during the meeting dealt with the efforts exerted in order to end the Palestinian internal division. The two sides underlined the importance of continuing common coordination and consultation in the interest of both peoples.

For his part, Abbas expressed appreciation of Syria’s efforts and its role in supporting the Palestinian national reconciliation, particularly because Syria is a basic side in the region, the peace process and head of the Arab Summit.

Abbas briefed al-Assad about the latest developments on the Palestinian- Israeli negotiations.

Vice President Farouk al-Shara, Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem and Deputy Foreign Minister Fayssal al-Mikdad attended the meeting.

“Talks with President al-Assad were comprehensive, dealing with all proposed issues related to negotiations, the Palestinian internal situation and the indirect peace talks between Syria and Israel under Turkish meditation,” Abbas said in a press statement following the meeting.

He added that discussions also dealt with the comprehensive inter-Palestinian dialogue and endeavours to apply the Arab initiatives adopted at the Damascus Summit, underlining the importance of Syria’s role in the Palestinian national reconciliation.

Al-Moallem, for his part, renewed Syria’s commitment to the unity of the Palestinians, underlining the need for accelerating the Palestinian national dialogue.

“Through our talks with all Palestinian factions, we support efforts exerted by Egypt to hold dialogue with the factions as this leads to the Palestinian national unity,” Al-Moallem said.

Saeb Erekat, the Palestinian chief negotiator, described the meeting between al-Assad and Abbas as very positive that dealt with the details of the negotiations on the Palestinian track.

“During the meeting, we felt President al-Assad’s keenness to make the Palestinian dialogue a success, restore the unity of the Palestinians and end division in the interest of the Arabs,” Erekat said.

He added talks also tackled the Palestinian internal situation and Egypt’s efforts regarding dialogue, seeking al-Assad’s help in any possible domain to make the dialogue a success and end the Palestinian division.

Abbas visited Damascus on July 7 and discussed with al-Assad the situation on the Palestinian arena and peace process as well as means of achieving Palestinian national unity.

Abbas left Damascus in the afternoon.