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Russia: Lavrov says arms to Syria legal so drop the sensationalism01:40

Russia: Lavrov says arms to Syria legal so drop the sensationalism

Russian Federation, Sochi
May 17, 2013 at 12:51 GMT +00:00 · Published

Russia: Lavrov says arms to Syria legal so drop the sensationalism

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon met with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov for talks in the Black Sea resort of Sochi on Friday. Discussion focussed largely on finding a resolution to the conflict in Syria, and on Russian weapon supplies to the Syrian government.

During a press conference Lavrov maintained that Russian-supplied weapons, such as the anti-ship missiles, do not destabilize the balance of power in the region, with Russia adhering to international law while fulfilling its export contracts with the Syrian government. He stated: "I don't understand why the media is trying to make a sensation out of this. We have never hidden the fact we do sell weapons to Syria because we have signed contracts with this state, we don't break any international laws. We don't break our legislation, our expert legislation. We sell defensive weapons, air-defence systems, and this is not breaking the balance of forces in the region."

Lavrov also reiterated Russia's long-term stance that the Syrian conflict must be resolved without foreign intervention, declaring: "the only way to resolve this conflict is an inclusive all-Syrian dialogue without any outside intervention. We would like Syria to maintain its territorial integrity and its sovereignty. We do agree that the best platform for the international community to act is the Geneva Communique dating back to June 30, 2012".

Moscow and Washington released a joint call for a follow up to the 2012 UN-led peace initiative regarding Syria during US Secretary of State John Kerry's official visit to Moscow on May 7. June 2012 saw foreign ministers from Russia, China, and France meeting in Switzerland alongside the UK's foreign secretary and the US secretary of state to discuss the Geneva Comminique for the ongoing Syrian conflict. Currently without a set date, Russia has proposed the involvement of Syria's neighbours, such as Iran, in the fresh round of negotiations expected to take place in June. Ban Ki-Moon stressed that he was working with international leaders to fix a date for the conference as soon as possible. "We should not lose this moment," he said.

Russia: Lavrov says arms to Syria legal so drop the sensationalism01:40
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Russia: Lavrov says arms to Syria legal so drop the sensationalism

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon met with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov for talks in the Black Sea resort of Sochi on Friday. Discussion focussed largely on finding a resolution to the conflict in Syria, and on Russian weapon supplies to the Syrian government.

During a press conference Lavrov maintained that Russian-supplied weapons, such as the anti-ship missiles, do not destabilize the balance of power in the region, with Russia adhering to international law while fulfilling its export contracts with the Syrian government. He stated: "I don't understand why the media is trying to make a sensation out of this. We have never hidden the fact we do sell weapons to Syria because we have signed contracts with this state, we don't break any international laws. We don't break our legislation, our expert legislation. We sell defensive weapons, air-defence systems, and this is not breaking the balance of forces in the region."

Lavrov also reiterated Russia's long-term stance that the Syrian conflict must be resolved without foreign intervention, declaring: "the only way to resolve this conflict is an inclusive all-Syrian dialogue without any outside intervention. We would like Syria to maintain its territorial integrity and its sovereignty. We do agree that the best platform for the international community to act is the Geneva Communique dating back to June 30, 2012".

Moscow and Washington released a joint call for a follow up to the 2012 UN-led peace initiative regarding Syria during US Secretary of State John Kerry's official visit to Moscow on May 7. June 2012 saw foreign ministers from Russia, China, and France meeting in Switzerland alongside the UK's foreign secretary and the US secretary of state to discuss the Geneva Comminique for the ongoing Syrian conflict. Currently without a set date, Russia has proposed the involvement of Syria's neighbours, such as Iran, in the fresh round of negotiations expected to take place in June. Ban Ki-Moon stressed that he was working with international leaders to fix a date for the conference as soon as possible. "We should not lose this moment," he said.

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