The Group of Seven industrialized nations on Tuesday urged Russia to pressure the Syrian government to end the six-year civil war, but rejected a British call to impose new sanctions on Moscow over its support of President Bashar Assad. “Russia can be a part of that future and play an important role”, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said.Or, he added, it could maintain its alliance with Syria, Iran and militant group Hezbollah, “which we believe is not going to serve Russia’s interests’ longer term”. He flew straight from the summit in Italy to Moscow, carrying the G-7’s strong desire for a new start in Syria, but few concrete proposals to make it happen. Finally, the G-7 members broadly agree that Assad should go – but not necessarily when, or how. European leaders are especially conscious of the disaster in Libya, where an internationally backed ouster of dictator Moammar Gadhafi was followed by a descent into chaos and factional fighting and about the last week’s chemical attack, the group decided not to approve new sanctions but to ask an investigation to the Organization for the Prohibition of the Chemical Weapons
The Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends the weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem and he said that Israel fully supports the American airstrike in Syria. He also underline the fact that Trump did it for moral reasons, in the face of horrible sights from Idlib Province, but also to send out a clear message that there is a price to be paid for using chemical weapons. “There is an existing commitment from 2013 to remove all chemical weapons from Syria, and this commitment has not yet been fully met”, Netanyahu added. “We call on the international community to complete this task. This is an opportunity for American-Russian collaboration on this particular point”. This job needs to be completed. On Friday, U.S. Vice President Mike Pence called Netanyahu to thank him for his support of U.S. President Donald Trump’s retaliatory strike in Syria. The Prime Minister also committed to help and accomodate Syrian refugees
China’s U.N. ambassador never mentioned the suspected chemical weapons attack in Syria, or U.S. airstrikes, at an emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council Friday. Instead, Liu Jieyi focused on the need for a political solution to the six-year conflict. China usually supports Russia, a close ally of Syria that accused the U.S. of aggression and violation of international law with Thursday night’s missile strike. But Liu steered clear of any criticism, referring obliquely to “some complicated new situations” in Syria in recent days which the international community must watch.
The EU condemns in the strongest terms the air strike that hit the town of Khan Sheikhoun in Idlib province on 4 April 2017, which has had horrific consequences, causing the deaths and injuries of scores of civilians including children and relief workers, with many victims displaying symptoms of gas poisoning. The EU urges the United Nations Security Council to come together, strongly condemn the attack on Khan Sheikhoun and ensure a swift, independent and impartial investigation of the attack. Those guilty of violations of international law and the use of chemical weapons have to be sanctioned accordingly. In March, the EU added 4 high-ranking Syrian military officials to the sanctions list for their role in the use of chemical weapons against the civilian population, in line with the EU’s policy to fight the proliferation and use of chemical weapons.
In an interview with FOX News Channel’s Bret Baier Egyptian president Abdel Fattah el-Sisi praised President Trump and talked about the ongoing crisis in Syria. The Egyptian leader said he fully trusts “the capability” of the U.S. president. El-Sisi told that the “vacuum” created by Obama administration has permitted Russia to increase its influence in the region. El-Sisi told to FOW news: “I think that they are defending their interests” talking about Russia in Syria.
Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov said Monday it was too early to assess results of the fifth round of the Geneva talks on Syria. Gatilov’s remarks came upon his arrival to Geneva accompanied by Sergey Vershinin, the Director of the Middle East and North Africa Department at the Russian Foreign Ministry. He is expected to hold two meetings with the official delegation of the Syrian Arab Republic and representatives of “Moscow platform” opposition on Tuesday and a meeting with al-Riyadh opposition delegation on Wednesday.
Dozens of displaced persons have been killed in an air raid allegedly carried out by the US-led anti-ISIS coalition on a school where they were sheltering in the ISIS-controlled Al-Raqqah province, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) said on Wednesday. It reported that at least 33 people were killed in the bombardment by warplanes believed to belong to the International Coalition, carried out in the city of Mansura in western Al-Raqqah province on Tuesday night. SOHR activists said that 33 bodies being pulled out of the rubble of the school before members of ISIS arrived to drive civilians away.
Over 200 members of an armed opposition from the al-Waer district in Homs, Syria, agreed to use the president’s offer of amnesty and to lay down arms, local media reported Monday. the governor of Homs province reportedly said that the Syrian Armed Forces opened an additional passage from Homs for civilians who would like to leave the town with the armed opposition and refuted the rumors that civilians had been forced to leave the district of al-Waer. On Saturday, the governor said that the first group of militants and their relatives to leave the al-Waer district, made up a total of 300 militants and 1,065 civilians.
The Council of the EU was adding high-ranking military officials over the alleged use of chemical weapons against civilians. “On 20 March 2017, the Council added 4 high-ranking military officials to the list of those targeted by EU restrictive measures against the Syrian regime. The EU added these 4 persons for their role in the use of chemical weapons against the civilian population, in line with the EU’s policy to fight the proliferation and use of chemical weapons”, the statement said.
Syrian government forces have retaken the areas lost yesterday in Damascus during an anti-regime offensive, according to state news agency SANA, citing the General Staff of the Armed Forces. According to the General Staff, loyalist forces retook control of the “points where terrorists had infiltrated”, referring to opposition militants. Members of al-Qaeda also participated in the anti-government offensive on Sunday in the Jobar quarter.