Neither side can win the civil war in Syria — which has reached a stalemate — and Damascus will call for a cease-fire with the rebels at proposed peace talks in Geneva, the country's deputy prime minister said in an interview with the Guardian
"Neither the armed opposition nor the regime is capable of defeating the other side," Qadri Jamil told the newspaper. "This zero balance of forces will not change for a while."
In addition, Syria’s economy had lost about $100 billion during the war, he said, twice the country's national production — and it can't afford to lose any more.
Any truce would be "under international observation," which would be provided by neutral or friendly countries, Jamil said, insisting he was speaking for the Damascus government. Syrian rebels have repeatedly refused to attend cease-fire talks unless President Bashar Assad is removed from power.
The deputy prime minister’s statements are the first time Syria has said what it will propose at the anticipated summit, the Guardian says.
"An end to external intervention, a cease-fire, and the launching of a peaceful political process in a way that the Syrian people can enjoy self-determination without outside intervention and in a democratic way,” Jamil told the Guardian."The paradox now is that the U.S. is trying to give the SNC the leading role. We're fed up with this monopolistic view.
"Let nobody have any fear that the regime in its present form will continue. For all practical purposes the regime in its previous form has ended. In order to realize our progressive reforms we need the West and all those who are involved in Syria to get off our shoulders," he said.
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