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Safadi, Lavrov discuss ceasefire in southern Syria

Top diplomats reiterate necessity of political solution to Syrian crisis

By JT - Jul 05,2018 - Last updated at Jul 05,2018

AMMAN — Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi on Wednesday stressed the need for immediate measures to ensure the safety of Syrians in the southern Daraa province and the delivery of humanitarian aid to those displaced in the border areas. 

Safadi said that dozens of trucks are waiting for the approval of Damascus to send humanitarian aid to the displaced Syrians in the border area near Jordan as a result of the ongoing bombardment campaign on Syria’s Daraa province.

During a meeting in Moscow on Wednesday, Safadi and his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov agreed on the "necessity and inevitability" of a political solution to Syria's seven-year crisis based on the Geneva Communique that calls for a ceasefire and political settlement in Syria, the statement said.

Talks also focused on efforts to reach a ceasefire in Daraa and address the deteriorating humanitarian conditions in the southern Syrian province, according to a Foreign Ministry statement.

Since June 18, the Syrian army has been launching a heavy bombardment campaign against rebel-held areas in the southern provinces of Daraa and Quneitra.

At a joint news conference following the meeting, Safadi stressed the need for an immediate ceasefire in Syria’s Daraa to prevent the emergence of a large-scale humanitarian crisis in the southern province. 

Safadi stressed the need for immediate steps to ensure the safety and dignity of the Syrian people in their country and the delivery of humanitarian aid to them from inside Syria, the statement said.

Safadi also warned that Jordan will respond to any threats to its security and the safety of its people, noting that the Kingdom has witnessed the fall of dozens of projectiles from Syria, without causing any injuries. “The Jordan Armed Forces-Arab Army is able to identify the source of mortar shells and will retaliate against such threats.” 

Amman and Moscow are working on ending the Syrian crisis, Safadi said, adding that the two countries are working on containing the crisis in the southern Syrian provinces to avoid more deterioration of the humanitarian situation.

Safadi also said that Jordan will remain the “gate of assistance” to the Syrian people, calling for a humanitarian truce in southern Syria to allow the delivering of aid while negotiations continue to reach a political solution to the ongoing crisis.

For his part, Lavrov said that Moscow and Amman have emphasized the need to implement all items of the Syrian de-escalation zone agreements, including counterterrorism.  

Lavrov also said that all key players should extend humanitarian assistance to the Syrian people “without any political preconditions”.

Russia’s top diplomat also said that he discussed with Safadi the issue of the hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees in Jordan and those on the border areas near Jordan, adding that the “two countries agree that these people need immediate humanitarian assistance.”

Lavrov also said that Moscow has many times stressed the importance of lifting the Western sanctions imposed on Syria in order to create “normal economic conditions to make refuges return home”.

Lavrov also thanked Jordan for its efforts to achieve reconciliation between the Syrian government and the opposition forces stationed in the southern regions. 

Safadi also said that his talks with Lavrov also focused on Jordan’s central issue, the Palestinian cause, which, he said, has to be solved according to two-state solution that ends the Israeli occupation and leads to the establishment of an independent Palestinian state on the pre-1967 lines with East Jerusalem as the capital.

Replying to a question, Safadi said that Jordan has not been acquainted with the details of the peace plan that is being prepared by Senior Adviser to the US President Jared Kushner.

“Jordan will deal with any proposal it receives according to its unaltered stance that calls for ending the conflict based on the two-state solution,” Safadi said, stressing that there will be no comprehensive peace without the end of the occupation. 

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