Normalization with Turkey impossible until it withdraws troops: Syria
The Syrian Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs says Turkey's illegal occupation of Syrian territory will block all efforts toward any kind of contact and relations.
Syrian Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs, Bassam Sabbagh, pointed out that Turkey has to withdraw its military forces from Syria or else it will ruin any efforts toward any kind of relations.
"Turkey has to withdraw its military forces. Any other aspects, yes, of course, we will be open to discuss with them, but not to do so and to insist on staying - that's illegal occupation and then this will block all the efforts toward any kind of contacts and relations with Turkey," Sabbagh said in an interview for Sputnik.
A couple of months ago, the head of the Syrian delegation to Moscow and Assistant Foreign Minister Ayman Sousan considered that Turkey's official announcement that it would withdraw its forces from all Syrian territory is "the gateway to re-establish communication between the two sides."
In a different context, the Syrian Vice Minister also slammed the unilateral sanctions against Syria as inhuman, illegal, and require unconditional lifting,
"This [unilateral sanctions] is inhuman, this is immoral. We also have, we all have a responsibility to call for the immediate unconditional lifting of the sanctions," Sabbagh said.
"And I think all of what they claim that the sanction has no impact on the humanitarian situation is false and unfounded," he told Sputnik.
In late September, Sputnik cited an informed source as saying that the US has taken a series of economic measures aimed at deterring Arab nations' efforts to reengage with Damascus, causing the Arab League's special committee to halt contacts with Syria.
At the level of the United Nations, the Syrian diplomat said the Security Council is not mirroring the geopolitical composition of today’s world, adding that developing countries need to have a representation within the body.
"The issue of the reform of the Security Council was also mentioned widely in the speeches of the leaders and I think this is very important because the realities of today's international relations are not reflected correctly in the Security Council," he said.
"We need to see this expansion of the Security Council so in a way, which is reflecting today's reality, and too, for the developing countries to have an important role in that."
Moreover, in terms of the UNGA, Sabbagh said the speeches from developing countries during the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly have demonstrated that the majority of them are getting tired of the Western hegemony.
"This year of the General Assembly was very important because we noticed from the speeches of the leaders, that most of the developing countries are tired from the Western hegemony," Sabbagh told Sputnik. "The developing countries now are looking for a multipolar leadership. This polarization by the Americans is not accepted anymore."
In the same context, Sabbagh considered that the process toward reaching a multipolar world order has begun and there is no way back from that.
"What is good is that it [the process towards a multipolar world] has already started, so we are on that track. Things will take time, I am sure, but I don't see a possibility for any reverse," Sabbagh indicated.
Relations with different countries
Elsewhere, he affirmed that the relations between Syria and Russia are excellent, emphasizing that the two countries cooperate on many advanced levels.
"The relations [between Russia and Syria] are excellent and the level of cooperation is so high on different levels, and on different aspects," he concluded.
As for China, the Syrian diplomat said Damascus and Beijing are working to intensify their relations as strategic partners, with the results to be seen in the coming months.
In September, President Bashar al-Assad visited China for talks with President Xi Jinping, marking his first trip to the country since the start of the Syrian conflict. During the visit, the two leaders announced the establishment of the China-Syria strategic partnership. They also agreed to strengthen cooperation in security and fight against terrorism.
"Of course the visit is very important. As you said it's historic and we intensify our strategic relations. It is going to be reflected in the coming months," Sabbagh said.
Syria is also "looking" to China’s help in reconstruction efforts, the diplomat added.
As for Saudi Arabia, Sabbagh said Syria is determined to develop "brotherly" relations with Saudi Arabia after the two countries agreed to resume diplomatic ties.
In May, Syria and Saudi Arabia agreed to resume the work of their diplomatic missions in both countries. It came on the heels of Syria's reinstatement in the Arab League.
Sabbagh said the two nations are on the track to resume diplomatic services.
"We are looking to developing these brotherly relations," he added.
The Vice Minister highlighted the importance of strengthening relations with all Arab countries, citing Syria’s return to the Arab League and President Bashar al-Assad’s participation in the Arab summit in Jeddah.