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Syrian FM Stresses to Pedersen Constitutional Committee’s ‘Sovereignty’


Asharq Al-Awsat


The officials met in Damascus for talks on international developments and their repercussions on the Middle East.
The state-run Syrian News Agency SANA said Mikdad underlined the need for all countries to abide by international law “especially in terms of non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries.”
Mikdad also demanded an end to the US and Turkish “occupations” of Syrian territories.
This was Pedersen’s first visit to Damascus since February.
The envoy highlighted his efforts on Syria on the international and regional levels, briefing Mikdad on the outcomes of the meetings he had held during the past period.
“The two sides stressed the importance of ensuring that there is no external interference in the work of this committee, emphasizing that the Syrian people have the exclusive right to decide the future of their country,” SANA said.
They tackled the recent agreement reached in Daraa, the regime’s satisfaction with the outcome and how normal life is returning to Daraa al-Balad.
“We had very substantial, very good discussions,” Pedersen said after meeting Mikdad.
“We discussed the economic and humanitarian challenges here in Syria, the challenges when it comes to livelihoods, and what we all can do to help improve that situation.”
The envoy said he hoped “to move forward also on the Constitutional Committee” working towards a post-war constitution, and that it would be “possible to call for a sixth round” of talks between its members.
The UN-backed committee, made up of 45 people representing the regime, the opposition, and civil society, was created in September 2019.
Pedersen said the fifth round of talks in January had been “a missed opportunity and disappointment.”

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