President Bashar al-Assad discussed here Wednesday with the visiting Arab League Secretary General, Nabil al-Arabi, the conditions in the Arab arena and what it witnesses of changes.
The meeting also touched upon the necessity of rallying Arab efforts and work within the framework of the Arab League (AL) as to solve Arab causes, particularly the Palestinian Cause and the importance of bolstering Palestinian reconciliation.
President al-Assad reviewed the bulk of reforms being made by Syria and plans designed as to overcome the circumstances witnessed on the way of building a modern democratic State.
The meeting also touched upon the conditions in Libya and the necessity for work as to spare the blood there and assist the Libyans to build their country’s future away from foreign interference.
In his turn, Al-Arabi voiced the Arab League full rejection to all bids of foreign interference in the Syrian Affairs, and support to the bulk of reforms made in Syria, hoping that Syria would emerge stronger given its pivotal role in the region.
Foreign and Expatriates Minister Walid al-Moallem and the Media and Political Presidential Advisor, Dr. Bouthaina Shaaban attended the meeting along with the delegation accompanying al-Arabi.
Vice President Farouk al-Shara also met with al-Arabi and discussed with him conditions in Arab and international arenas, and the importance of Arab League role in defending the Arab Nation’s rights and basics causes, particularly the Palestinian Cause and the liberation of the occupied Arab territories.
Earlier, Minister al-Moallem met with al-Arabi in presence of his deputy Dr. Fayssal Mikdad, who was also present in al-Shara-al-Arabi talks.
Expressing pleasure over meeting President al-Assad, Al-Arabi told press reporters after the meeting, “we talked frankly about many things … I am glad that President al-Assad underlined that Syria has entered a new stage … Syria is now going on the true reform track, which is quite essential. “
In response to journalists’ questions, al-Arabi said “we do not accept foreign interference in the internal affairs of the Arab countries, as the Arab League does not interfere in the internal affairs”, stressing that the interference in the internal affairs of allcountries is prohibited according to the UN Charter.
Al-Arabi considered what happened in Libya overstepped AL perceptions, pointing out that the AL has moved on March 11th in the Libyan issue to impose a no-fly zone, but it did not give authorization and does not have the right to give it.
“No one has the right to judge whether a president of whatever state has lost his legitimacy … it is people’s matter to decide on” AL Secretary General said.
Minister al-Moallem told reporters after President al-Assad’s meeting with Arab League Secretary-General that the discussions were positive and constructive, during which al-Arabi was briefed on President al-Assad’s vision on the reforms announced in his speech on June 20th and his determination to fulfill them.
Answering a question on the issue of the U.S. and French embassies and whether who opened fire in front of the embassy was identified, al-Moallem said that this issue will be solved according to Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, pointing out that protestors should not have exceeded the limits in front of the embassies, adding that”Those who did that have committed a mistake, because protesting against the two ambassadors’ visit to Hama is legitimate and it is something we sympathize with, and we as a state are responsible for maintaining the security of the embassies and their staff .”
On expected visits of the U.S. Ambassador to other provinces on Friday, al-Moallem said “We have been telling all the diplomats, even under normal circumstances, that traveling to any destination outside Damascus requires prior approval from the Foreign Ministry to prepare an ambassador’s visit and his / her meetings with provinces ‘officials, and to take all necessary security precautions to maintain the security of the ambassador or the embassy’s members, and this procedure was a routine until it was breached by the two Ambassadors’ visit to Hama.”
He added”We are determined to applying this procedure, stemming from our keenness on the safety of the diplomatic envoys, and when we see that a certain area is not suitable for a visit for security reasons, we tell the ambassadors frankly not to gothere, and we also say ‘if you think there is a breach of Vienna Convention, you can apply the principle of reciprocity on our ambassadors and ask them not to move without prior permission.”
“If there was an intention of breaching the rules that we are determined to implement, we would apply what the US applies on some embassies in it, which is not allowing a certain ambassador or an embassy member to exceed 25 kilometers from their work headquarters based on the principle of reciprocity “al-Moallem added.
Answering a question on whether there were any contacts with the two ambassadors after their visit to Hama, al-Moallem said “The two ambassadors visited Deputy Foreign Minister Dr. Fayssal Mikdad, and Undersecretary for Political Affairs, William Burns, called me yesterday.