‘Iraq supports all measures aimed at lifting the sanctions on Syria!’ – Iraqi PM on visit to Syria

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Mohammed Shia’ al Sudani, Iraqi Prime Minister, and Syrian President Assad address a press conference after bilateral talks

IRAQI government spokesman Basem al-Awadi has said that Iraq supports all procedures aimed at lifting the coercive economic measures and sanctions imposed on Syria, and stressed that Syria’s security is part and parcel of the security of Iraq and the region.

In a statement on Sunday concerning the visit of Iraqi Prime Minister, Muhammad Shia’ al-Sudani, to Syria, al-Awadi said: ‘Iraq considers that the security and stability of Syria is part and parcel of security and stability of both Iraq and the region.
‘The stance of Iraq is to support all measures aimed at lifting the sanctions imposed on Syria, in order to alleviate the human suffering and lack of living requirements of the Syrian people.’
He affirmed that Iraq is determined to contribute to the economic recovery of Syria and to address the effects of the war.
Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad and Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia’ al Sudani held a joint press conference on Sunday following their bilateral talks.
At the opening of the conference, President al-Assad said: ‘I welcome Prime Minister Muhammad Shia’ al-Sudani and the official delegation accompanying him, the media delegation and the Iraqi national media.
‘I welcome all of you to Syria, on this important visit, the importance of which comes from the nature of the deep relations between the Syrian and Iraqi peoples, and from the depth of the shared history between the two countries.’
He added: ‘This region, the region of the Levant and Mesopotamia was the most important factory for major events in ancient and modern history, this common history that marked the two brotherly peoples of Syria and Iraq with many common features that were reflected in common principles, interests and emotions that we felt clearly.
‘We saw different stages when the Syrian people stood by the Iraqi people, when they suffered from the scourge of war two decades ago, and we felt them when the Iraqi people stood by their Syrian brothers when the aggression against Syria began a decade and a half ago.
‘And during that war, the Iraqi government and people were the voice of Syria in reality and not hypothetically.
‘It is the voice of Syria in various Arab, regional and global forums, strongly rejecting all forms of aggression and all justifications for the aggression launched against Syria and during the earthquake that occurred a few months ago, the Iraqi people were a true brother, so the Iraqis rushed in organised and spontaneous groups and individuals to help their Syrian brothers those affected by the earthquake.’
Al-Assad continued: ‘During the war, Iraq offered the most precious thing that a person can offer, which is blood, and this blood was a joint Syrian-Iraqi blood that protected the western flanks of Iraq and the eastern flanks of Syria.
‘It protected the two Arab peoples and armies. In order to pay tribute to the authentic Iraqi Arab Army and the Popular Mobilisation Forces who scored the most wonderful victories in cooperation with their brothers and sisters in the Syrian Arab Army and the auxiliary forces in Syria.
‘From all of the above, comes the importance of this visit. Here lies our responsibility as officials in both countries, to be able to take practical steps that can reach this goal, i.e. strengthening bilateral relations, especially as we meet today in light of challenges.
‘Great at the global level, first the whole world suffers security, politically and of course as a result economically, and all of this has repercussions on our countries, there are challenges that we face directly and in particular, foremost of which is the challenge of terrorism and cooperation in the field of combating terrorism, this terrorism that we see active and viable does not die due to international supply.
‘Specifically the west, and we all know what the word west means, because it is the western tool in order to strike countries that adhere to their independence, their independent decisions, and their national interests. In addition to that some neighbouring countries have been directly involved in supporting this terrorism, either for expansionist reasons or backward ideological reasons, in addition to the challenges and the biggest one is the theft of Syria and Iraq’s share of the water of the Euphrates River
‘And what this means is thirst and hunger due to the disastrous situation of crops and the spread of diseases and the spread of epidemics among the things that confront us as Arab countries, in addition to the issue of drugs, which is the most dangerous scourge now facing countries and is no different from terrorism, as it is capable of destroying society in the same way that terrorism does in any society.’
Al-Assad went on: ‘Many issues were discussed by the Prime Minister and me. Of course, we talked about the new Arab situation, which we can describe as relatively positive and not absolute.
‘This situation was the focus of an extensive discussion between us, and we focused on how to exploit this situation, exploit these new positives and strengthen Arab cooperation with the aim of reducing the repercussions of the worsening international situation on our Arab countries.’
The Syrian President continued: ‘We all know that the recent positive developments did not live up to the international chaos makers, and they moved immediately and quickly in order to turn the wheel of history back, and this calls for more cooperation between our countries, bilaterally or collectively, through regional groupings or through the League of Arab States, in order to preserve what was achieved and developed later.
‘Of course, we went through the points quickly. Because we did not finish the talks, we will follow up after the media meeting, but we do not want to be late for the press conference.
‘Likewise, the issue of inter-economic relations will be the axis that we will follow up later with practical steps. It is possible to achieve the strengthening of relations between the two countries in a way that will benefit them both and mitigate the repercussions of the unjust siege on Syria.
‘The points that were discussed and the ideas that were put forward will be followed up by the relevant institutions in the two countries in order to develop them and turn them into steps that can be implemented later.’
President al-Assad concluded: ‘I repeat my warm welcome to Mr Prime Minister, and I am sure that this visit will constitute not only a qualitative leap, but an actual, practical and real shift in the framework of fraternal relations, I hope for the Iraqi people, all progress, prosperity and more stability, and I wish the Prime Minister all success in serving his country and people.’
For his part, the Iraqi Prime Minister thanked President al-Assad for the invitation to visit Syria, adding that the security and stability of the two countries move for further bilateral coordination to face the common challenges.
Al Sudani reiterated Iraq’s firm support for Syria’s unity and sovereignty, stressing that the security of Iraq is the security of Syria.
He pointed out that Iraq, along with all countries that support stability, is working on Syria’s economic recovery, which serves the interest of Iraq too.
‘The perpetual coordination between the two countries is the optimal way to face common challenges, especially terrorism and water shortage.’
Al Sudani called for lifting the coercive western sanctions imposed on Syria, which exacerbate the suffering of the Syrian people, and strongly rejected the repeated Israeli aggressions against Syrian territory.

  • Syria meanwhile, has declared it supports the decisions of the Cairo summit and all efforts to stop the bloodshed and destruction in Sudan, a source at the Foreign and Expatriates Ministry said on Sunday.

‘The Cairo summit emphasised the necessity of full respect for the sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of Sudan, non-interference in its internal affairs, and for treating the existing conflict as an internal matter’ without interference from other countries.
Syria considers Sudan ‘a dear and integral part of Arab land,’ the spokesman said.
‘Syria supports the decisions of the Cairo summit and all the sincere efforts made to stop the bloodshed and destruction in the brotherly Sudan and stresses the importance of the results of the Cairo summit and their implementation in the interest of the Sudanese people to ensure security and stability.
‘The transmission of serious crises from one Arab country to another as a result of external interference has become known and requires all our Arab and friendly countries to work to stop them,’ the source added.