Syria ready for ceasefire: Deputy PM

Syria ready for ceasefire: Deputy PM
Fri Sep 20, 2013 09:39:09

Syria’s Deputy Prime Minister Qadri Jamil has said the government will call for a ceasefire if the proposed the Geneva-2 peace conference takes place.

If the armed opposition in Syria accepts the ceasefire, it would have to be monitored “under international observation,” Jamil told British newspaper The Guardian  on Thursday.

He added that such supervision could be provided by UN peacekeepers, assuming they came from friendly or neutral countries.

“Neither the armed opposition nor the government is capable of defeating the other side. This zero balance of forces will not change for a while,” Jamil added.

Jamil added that the Syrian economy has lost an estimated $100 billion during the war - the equivalent of two years of normal production.

Moscow and Washington say they are committed to bringing both sides of the conflict to the negotiating table at the Geneva-2 peace conference. An earlier set of talks in Geneva broke up last year after just one day. No Syrians attended the event.

Differences remain between Russia and the US over who should take part in Geneva-2. The US wants the Western-backed Syrian National Coalition (SNC) to drop its boycott of the talks and be the only opposition delegation at the conference.

Russia has proposed that a combined delegation of Kurds also be present at Geneva-2.

But, Jamil said that outside powers must stop trying to influence the outcome of events in Syria. He added that the Syrian government would be pushing to “end external intervention, a ceasefire and the launching of a peaceful political process in a way that the Syrian people can enjoy self-determination without outside intervention and in a democratic way.”

Jamil, the leader of the secular People’s Will Party and the co-chair of the Popular Front for Change and Liberation, was appointed last year to end the monopoly of the ruling Ba’ath party in the Syrian government.

“We wanted to give a lesson to both sides to prepare for a government of national unity and break the unilateral aspect of the government – and break the fear in opposition circles of sitting in front of the authorities,” he said.

“For all practical purposes the government in its previous form has ended. In order to realize our progressive reforms we need the West and all those who are involved in Syria to get off our shoulders," he said.

Jamil also said that he didn’t believe the UN’s report on the August 21 chemical attack was fully objective, citing evidence provided by Russia that the chemical weapons could have been sold to the rebels by fundamentalists from Libya. Last month’s attack is believed to have killed over 1,000 people.


string(1535) "[{"id":"1479531","sort":"3094395","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2013/05/30/alalam_635055326891393718_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Syria opposition will not partake in Geneva talks"} ,{"id":"1479837","sort":"3094396","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2013/05/31/alalam_635056228237525661_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"So-called Syria opposition’s hostile to democracy"} ,{"id":"1482722","sort":"3094397","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2013/06/09/alalam_635063957859829518_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Syria opposition: No talks until we have more arms"} ,{"id":"1495143","sort":"3094398","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2013/07/15/alalam_635095126395742878_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Syria opposition, Israel discuss arms supply plan"} ,{"id":"1497845","sort":"3094399","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2013/07/23/alalam_635102152627093148_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Syria opposition chief in France to seek arms"} ,{"id":"1498825","sort":"3094400","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2013/07/26/alalam_635104673160002955_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Syria opposition meets UN Security Council"} ,{"id":"1499760","sort":"3094401","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2013/07/29/alalam_635106950148801980_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Syria opposition says is ready for talks"} ,{"id":"1500887","sort":"3094402","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2013/08/01/alalam_635109901404976336_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Syria opposition cancels Turkey confab"} ,{"id":"1502618","sort":"3094403","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2013/08/06/alalam_635114217533403989_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Syria opposition to receive $1bn fund: report"} ]"