Prince Saud, Secretary Kerry discuss developments in Syria

June 25, 2013

Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal met with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in Jeddah on June 25 to discuss developments in Syria, along with a range of regional and international issues. The meeting was attended by Saudi Ambassador to the U.S. Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir, U.S. Ambassador to Saudi Arabia James Smith and other relevant Saudi officials.

In remarks following the meeting, Prince Saud said that ending the crisis in Syria requires quick action and a clear international resolution. “Syria now can only be considered an occupied land. This requires a firm stand and speedy action from the international community,” he stated.  He also highlighted the importance of providing international protection for the Syrian people, and commended the U.S. decision to send military aid to the Free Syrian Army.

Prince Saud condemned the interference of foreign parties who support the Syrian regime, stating, “Perhaps the most ominous of these developments is the involvement of foreign forces, foremost of which is Hezbollah and others with support from Iran’s Revolutionary Guard in the mass murder of Syrians with unrestricted Russian military support.”  The foreign minister said there is no rationale to let Russia’s open and fervent arming of the Syrian regime and the foreign forces propping it to go on unabated.

Prince Saud emphasized that the crisis in Syria can’t be tolerated and should be viewed as a genocide against its own people that negates all internal laws, norms and principles. Furthermore, he confirmed that the current Syrian regime will play no role in the future of Syria, and illustrated its lack of international legitimacy, as the Syrian National Coalition continues to receive recognition by the world community as the sole representative of the Syrian people.

Secretary Kerry agreed that a political solution is needed to resolve the crisis. “We [the United States] believe that the best solution is a political solution in which the people of Syria have an opportunity to be able to make a choice about their future,” he said. “We continue to believe, as His Royal Highness referred to, that the Geneva 2 [conference] offers the best opportunity to be able to try to bring that about.”

Secretary Kerry commended the work done by the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz and Prince Saud to bring about peace and stability in the region.

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