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Foreign ministers of Iran, Russia, Turkey meet in New York to discuss Syria crisis

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)
(From left to right) Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. (Photo by IRNA news agency)

Iran, Russia and Turkey have held a trilateral meeting on Syria in the Astana Format amid ongoing diplomatic efforts to find a political solution to the crisis in the war-torn Arab country.

The joint meeting was held on the sidelines of the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York on Wednesday, and attended by Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.

UN Special Envoy for Syria Geir Pedersen was also present at the talks, which took place at the Turkish Embassy, near the UN headquarters.

Speaking at the event, Amir-Abdollahian reiterated that there is no military solution to the Syrian crisis, adding that the conflict must be resolved peacefully and in accordance with the principles of international law.

He also emphasized that the withdrawal of all foreign forces from Syria, the end of the occupation and full respect for the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity are essential prerequisites for achieving this goal. 

The top Iranian diplomat further highlighted the need for removal of sanctions on Syria and increased humanitarian assistance to the Syrian people, given the negative impact of sanctions on ordinary people and the economic situation in the country.

At the end of the summit, the foreign ministers once again reaffirmed their strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity of Syria.

Iran and Russia, as the allies of the Syrian government, as well as Turkey, which sides with the opposition, set up the Astana peace process in January 2017 intending to put an end to the Syrian conflict through the involvement of the Syrian government and the opposition.

Back in July, a trilateral meeting was held between Iranian President Ebrahim Raeisi, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the Iranian capital Tehran.

The leaders gathered for the seventh summit of the Astana process, where they condemned foreign meddling and emphasized Syrians’ right to determine their country’s fate.

The summit ended by issuance of a final statement, through which, the Astana process’s guarantor states likewise insisted that there were no military solutions to the Syrian conflict, and underlined their resolve to continue their cooperation in the fight against terrorism in all its forms and manifestations.

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