* below is from a Syrian news website *
Russia says US proof of chemical attack in Syria ‘unconvincing’ as international opposition to US strike mounts
Sep 02, 2013
Capitals, (SANA) –Russian President Vladimir Putin expressed support to the Russian Parliament’s initiative to send a parliamentary delegation to discuss the crisis in Syria with the U.S. Congress.
“There is no better way than direct dialogue and presenting attitudes publicly,” Russian Itar Tass news agency quoted Putin as saying on Monday.
Chairman of the Russian Duma Council, Sergei Naryshkin, and President of the Russian Federation Council, Valentina Matviyenko, asked President Putin to use parliamentary ties between Russia and the US to encourage dialogue with Washington on Syria.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov affirmed that directing a military strike against Syria will delay holding an international conference on the crisis in Syria and hinder its resolution.
In a joint press conference with South Africa’s Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, Lavrov said that if the operation announced by the US President, then the international conference will be delayed for a very long time if not forever.
He said that the political solution will prevail in the end, but the more we forestall it and the more those who influence the opposition delay, they will find that they will be unable to coerce the opposition to participate in the conference, and there will be more civilian victims.
Lavrov hoped that the proponents of the military solution for the crisis in Syria will take into consideration the answers provided by experts on the baseless allegations of the Syrian government’s use of chemical weapons in Syria.
He pointed out that the agenda of the upcoming G20 summit in St. Petersburg doesn’t include discussing the Syrian issue, but any participating president can pose any issue, and Russia is prepared to discuss the crisis in Syria during the summit.
Lavrov stressed that Moscow is committed to the agreements reached during the G8 summit, and that it affirmed that the use of chemical weapons in Syria by any side is unacceptable, but all information on its used must be investigated and the results must be submitted to the Security Council, noting that despite recent statements, Washington hasn’t abandoned the international conference on Syria.
He warned that any attempt to legitimize the violation of international law will lead to chaos and destroy international legitimacy, saying that if some people think that chaos would eb better than international law, the Security Council and the UN, then Russia cannot agree with this at all, asserting that Russia will do its best to defend international law, the UN charter and the Security Council’s role.
Lavrov said that the situation in Syria in the Middle East affects Russia’s interests directly, and that the negative effects of the growing international terrorism has been felt for a long time, asserting that the situation in Syria affects other countries’ national security, adding that terrorists have increased their activities recently and have become very comfortable.
He stressed that the common priority in national security must be preserving citizens’ lives, taking precedence over procuring oil and gas.
Earlier, Lavrov Lavrov stressed that the evidence presented by the US to Russia on the Syrian authorities’ alleged use of chemical weapon “are intangible and did not convince the Russian side.”
Lecturing at the International Relations University affiliated to the Russian Foreign Ministry on Monday, Lavrov said “Yes, they presented some things but they do not contain any tangible things and do not contain geographical coordinates and names and there is no evidence that the samples were taken by professional specialists.”
He added that what our US, British and French partners have previously and recently offered for us absolutely didn’t convince us as there are no facts but a mere talk about what we surely know and if you asked them about a detailed evidence they say that it is characterized by secrecy, asserting that it means that there are no such facts.
He said that the foreign players are applying double standard policy regarding the events in the Middle East and North Africa.
He reiterated that Russia and China agree on the need of solving the crisis in Syria through dialogue.
The Russian Minister expressed doubts over the possibility of convincing the Syrian opposition to participate in the upcoming international conference on Syria if a strike was directed against Syria.
Lavrov described the statements of his US counterpart, John Kerry, as “odd” regarding what Washington said that it had offered “irrefutable evidence” to Moscow on the use of chemical weapons in Syria.
He pointed out that Russia seeks to hold a conference for the establishment of zones free of weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East, asserting that Syria was one of the countries which called for the establishment of a zone free of weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East.
The Russian Foreign Ministry’s envoy for human rights, Konstantin Dolgov, criticized as ‘flawed’ the US attempts to justify a potential aggression on Syria to ”protect civilians”.
”This kind of argument is flawed by all accounts,” Dolgov said on his Twitter page on Monday, citing previous interventions in in Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya proved in the past, which proved invalid.
Dolgov said that the best way to safeguard human rights is through a political settlement process based on negotiations and dialogue.
”We can see this kind of ‘protection’ in Afghanistan where the warplanes are snuffing out hundreds of lives, which they dub as collateral damage,” he pointed out.
China emphasizes importance of respecting UN Charter in any military action against Syria
China affirmed that any measure about Syria must respect the UN Charter and the principal rules of international relations, expressing grave concerns over US threats of taking a unilateral military action against the country.
The Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman, Hong Lei, was quoted as saying that China is gravely concerned about a possible unilateral military action against Syria. ”Any measure should avoid causing more complications to the Syrian issue and more catastrophes in the Middle East,” he pointed out.
There should be no rushing to prejudge the results of the UN investigation into an alleged chemical weapons use in Syria, Hong pointed out, calling on the UN to conduct an independent and professional probe into CW use allegations.
UN, Iran stress need to political solution to crisis in Syria
Iranian Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, expressed rejection of any military intervention in Syria, asserting the necessity of finding a political solution to the crisis in Syria.
In a phone call with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon on Monday, Zarif expressed his country’s readiness to reach a peaceful solution to get out of the crisis in Syria.
He condemned the use of chemical weapons.
For his part, Ki-Moon reiterated the need for finding a political solution to the crisis in Syria.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Jawad Zarif stressed that the foreign military intervention in Syria will complicate the crisis, increase terrorism and extremism in the region, warning of the consequences of any potential military act against Syria.
During a phone call with his Malaysian counterpart Anifah Aman, Zarif pointed out to the need for solving the crisis in Syria through dialogue and political mechanism, adding that Iran is the biggest victim of the chemical weapons.
For his part, Malaysian Foreign Minister CLICK HERE