Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has declared that Syria’s war was over despite limited hotbeds of anti-government fighters.
In an interview on Friday with Trud newspaper, Lavrov said: "The Syrian war has ended. The country is returning gradually to normal peaceful life. Separate hotbeds of tension remain on territories not controlled by the Syrian government, for example, in Idlib and east of the Euphrates.”
Lavrov emphasized the importance of "comprehensive humanitarian assistance in Syria and pushing the political process forward to achieve reliable and long-term stability in the country, as well as in the Middle East region as a whole.”
The Russian FM believes that the formation of a committee to oversee the reform of Syria’s constitution will be an important stage in promoting the political process without UN assistance.
The move will provide the Syrian rival parties – the government and opposition – with an opportunity to start a direct dialogue on the country’s future, he told the newspaper.
Lavrov also tackled the outcome of talks held Thursday between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Russian President Vladimir Putin in Sochi.
Lavrov said both Russia and Israel agreed to boost military dialogue on Syria. Putin and Netanyahu underlined the need to safeguard Syria’s territorial integrity and sovereignty.
“A visit like this is purely electoral,” Yisrael Beitenu party leader Avigdor Lieberman said.
“In Russia, nothing is by happenstance. Everything there is planned to the smallest detail. When they hold the prime minister of Israel in a waiting room for nearly three hours, this is probably not by accident,” Lieberman said Friday.
He also argued that Netanyahu didn’t comment on Lavrov’s statement that the Israeli prime minister agreed with Russia on the need to respect Syrian sovereignty.