Tags: Syria | syria | assad

Syria's Assad Disputes Report he Refuses to Discuss Yielding Power

Image: Syria's Assad Disputes Report he Refuses to Discuss Yielding Power

Sunday, 19 Jan 2014 06:07 AM

 

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
MOSCOW —  Russian news agency Interfax is reporting that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said in Damascus on Sunday he has no intention of giving up power and the issue is not up for discussion, but Assad is disputing he made such comments.

"If we wanted to give up, we would have done so at the very beginning. We are on guard for our country. This issue is not up for discussion," he was reported as telling visiting Russian parliamentarians, days ahead of an internationally sponsored peace conference on Syria.

Syrian state media dismissed as "not accurate" the Interfax report.  It also said Assad "did not conduct an interview with the agency," although Interfax had not said that it had.

The comments attributed to Assad underscore differences between participants ahead of the Jan. 22 talks in Montreux, Switzerland, seen as the most serious global effort yet to end Syria's three-year conflict, during which Assad has enjoyed Russia's protection.
 
Syria's main political opposition group in exile agreed on Saturday to attend the talks, dubbed "Geneva 2", and said that three rebel groups supported the move.
 
But the fractured National Coalition itself has little influence on the ground in Syria and other major opposition fighter units have rejected its authority and peace talks.
 
The United Nations hopes the talks will bring about a political transition in the country, and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said last week that Syria's future had no place for Assad. Syria, however, said in a letter to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon last week that its focus at the peace conference would be on fighting "terrorism.”
 
Alexander Yushchenko, parliamentarian and member of the delegation to Syria, was quoted in Itar-Tass, another Russian news agency, as saying Assad "suggested that his opponents announce their candidacy and run against him for the votes of the people . . . but so far however, no one has done it."
 
Syria's civil war, which started when the opposition armed itself following months of security forces shooting at pro-democracy protests, has devastated the country and caused millions to flee their homes.
 
Hundreds of thousands are trapped in besieged areas and polio has broken out in the country as vaccination rates plummet. The war has left more than 100,000 dead.
In the besieged Damascus Yarmouk district, where 15 people have died of malnutrition, 200 parcels of food aid were delivered on Saturday, said Chris Gunness, spokesman for the U.N. Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA).
 
The delivery is tiny compared to the needs of the roughly 18,000 trapped residents and Gunness said it would only feed about 333 people for a month.

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

New UN Ebola Chief Vows Swift Response to Crisis

Tuesday, 30 Sep 2014 13:26 PM

The new head of the UN Ebola response team vowed Tuesday to take swift action on the crisis, saying ambitious targets ne . . .

Thousands of Children Orphaned, Rejected as Ebola Wrecks Families

Tuesday, 30 Sep 2014 13:20 PM

Two days after his mother died of Ebola at a clinic in the Liberian capital Monrovia last month, four-year-old John was  . . .

Expert: Obama Fails Kurds, Who Are 'Begging for Arms'

Tuesday, 30 Sep 2014 10:12 AM

President Barack Obama has pledged to protect and arm Syrians and Iraqis facing terrorist attacks by the Islamic State ( . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved