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Iran Press TV

Assad removal would contravene UN resolution: Russia

Iran Press TV

Mon Oct 5, 2015 4:5PM

Russia's foreign minister says unseating Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to resolve the country's crisis would constitute a blatant violation of a UN Security Council resolution.

"The overthrow of the ruling regime in Damascus would be a most violent breach of the UN Security Council resolution which approved the Geneva communiqué of June 30, 2012," Sergei Lavrov said on Monday.

He added that the UN measure sets out "only peaceful political and diplomatic means" to end the conflict in Syria, reiterating that sporadic calls by several governments for a military settlement of the crisis in Syria are a "breach of international law."

Lavrov also dismissed claims that Russia has been targeting the Western-backed opposition operating in Syria, including the so-called Free Syrian Army (FSA).

He added that Moscow is ready to 'establish contact with it (FSA) if it's really a capable military group of patriotic opposition consisting of Syrians."

'So far no one has told us where and how this Free Syrian Army operates or where and how other units of the so-called moderate opposition operate,' said Lavrov.

Moscow started its campaign weeks after Lavrov said he had been informed that the US-led coalition had, on a number of occasions, not carried out airstrikes against confirmed Daesh positions inside Syria.

The US and some of its Arab allies have been conducting airstrikes against Daesh inside Syria since last September. Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, in an interview with the Islamic Republic of Iran News Network, said the US-led strikes have been counterproductive. He also said the attacks have resulted in the spread of terrorism.

Syria has been gripped by a foreign-backed militancy since March 2011 aimed at toppling the government of President Bashar al-Assad, which has claimed the lives of more than 250,000 people so far.

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