" I think priorities lie in existence of a unified vision upon of the Arab region's future, particularly after the latest developments that had happened in our region… I think that top priority now following Iraq issue and terrorism spreading is stability issue because all of us have become targeted… and stability is the top priority and this is connected with the political and security side."

 

October 07, 2006

President Bashar al-Assad has stressed Syria's desire for consolidating the Syrian-Egyptian-Saudi axis in support of the Arab causes.

In a comprehensive interview given to the Kuwaiti newspaper 'al-Anba and published Saturday, President al-Assad talked about Syria's stances towards the regional and international developments.

Answering a question on the priorities regarding the Arab concerns the President said:" I think priorities lie in existence of a unified vision upon of the Arab region's future, particularly after the latest developments that had happened in our region… I think that top priority now following Iraq issue and terrorism spreading is stability issue because all of us have become targeted… and stability is the top priority and this is connected with the political and security side."

He added that another priority is the economic situation which also is linked to political and security condition as to the Arab relations as a whole … I think that all priorities are connected with each other but they change in accordance with circumstances .

Regarding Syria's position among moderates and extremists, in accordance to the US Secretary of States classification, President al-Assad rejected the idea of camps that, as he said, has been created by the Americans." I don't put my self in camps… I put myself with the Arabs, because some had tried to show that Syria, through these camps, is out of the Arab camp… any camp is bad… any camp is rejected, as an Arab I hope that we will not be divided into camps, "

" I reject to be from the first camp or from the second camp. I am from the Arab camp."

" As Arabs if we have viewpoints this is good thing and must be respected if we didn't agree on every thing …we are humans and some disagreements remain between us but through dialogue we bridge the gap… we have to enhance dialogue and not to be a fuel for the international struggle whether Arab against Arab or Arab against others,"

On a question whether the meeting of the GCC foreign ministers and those of Jordan and Egypt was directed against Syria, the president indicated that Syria did not consider that such a meeting was against Syria and said:" No on can convince me that these Arab countries met to stand or conspire against Syria."

 

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Syria's President Bashar Al-Assad gave an interview to head of Austrian daily "Standard" Foreign Policy Section, Joerdan Harr, in which the focus was made on the European-Syrian relations, the Syrian-American relations, the Anglo-American aggression on Iraq, as well as on the events in the region that followed the Second Gulf War and his vision regarding the future.

 The president pointed out that the European countries whether they are big or small can play a role in the world through bilateral relations or through the European Union and so the harmonious stances of the EU countries intensify the effectiveness of the European stances which is imperative because the world can not let one country think on behalf of all.

 The president added that the European countries should not be divided by their stances although the variety of opinions is acceptable and the interaction between Europe and the Middle East has given the European countries an important and positive role to play in the world. 

With regard to Austria's position, the president underlined that a role and action is expected from Austria whether through the EU or through bilateral relations and such a role would be effective if we listened to each other particularly as far as future positions are concerned.

 

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