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Syrian president, Russian deputy PM discuss post-war economic revival

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
This handout picture released by the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) on April 20, 2019 shows President Bashar al-Assad (R) receiving Russian Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov in the Syrian capital Damascus.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Russian Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov have discussed a constitutional committee meant to draft the Arab country’s new constitution as well as Moscow’s efforts to revive the war-ravaged nation’s economy.

During a meeting in the Syrian capital Damascus on Saturday, President Assad and Borisov exchanged views about ways to improve bilateral cooperation in all fields at different levels and the agreements signed between the two countries in the energy, industry, and trade sectors, the Syrian Arab News Agency SANA reported.

It added that the two sides also reviewed feasible mechanisms to overcome all the obstacles facing the implementation of the agreements, including the West’s sanctions on Syria, and to promote cooperation in new sectors in a way that would serve the interests of the two nations.

Borisov, who is also the chairman of the Joint Syrian-Russian Committee for Trade, Economy, Science and Technology Cooperation, briefed President Assad on the implementation of the agreements and the obstacles hindering their fulfillment.

He expressed his country’s intention to further support Syria against terrorism until the menace is totally eliminated and security and stability are fully restored to Syria.

Moscow is determined to play a role in Syria's reconstruction process and to support it in difficult circumstances caused by the economic and terror wars against the country, the Russian envoy pointed out.

"After our meeting in December, we proceeded within the [framework of the] reached agreements and so far expect no breakdowns of planned actions. I am convinced that all our efforts aimed at Syria’s economic revival will be successful," Borisov said.

Back in December, Borisov’s office said that the diplomat had discussed industrial, medical, and energy cooperation with President Assad in Damascus.

"The range of questions discussed with the Syrian leader included political affairs, Russia’s participation in Syria’s postwar reconstruction and restoration of life to normal, and cooperation in industry, medicine, energy and other branches of the economy," Borisov’s office said.

Syria has been gripped by foreign-backed militancy since March 2011. The Syrian government says the Israeli regime and its Western and regional allies are aiding Takfiri terrorist groups wreaking havoc in the country.

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Syria FM, Russia deputy PM discuss economic ties

Meanwhile, the Russian deputy prime minister and Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem also discussed the promotion of bilateral cooperation in different sectors.

They stressed the importance of enhancing economic cooperation in line with political and military ties until reaching a strategic partnership in a way that would benefit the two nations' common interests.

During a meeting with the Russian president’s special envoy Alexander Lavrentiev in Damascus earlier on Saturday, President Assad called for progress in stalled talks on a so-called buffer zone around militant-held Idlib province in the country’s northwest.

The Syrian president also stressed his government’s determination to eliminate terrorist groups that are holed up in Idlib and attack civilians in neighboring areas.

President Assad’s meeting with the Russian diplomat came ahead of fresh Syria talks aimed at ending the conflict in the war-torn country. The new round of Syria negotiations are scheduled to be held on April 25 and 26 in Kazakhstan.

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