The Syrian National Council Meets with the Foreign Ministers of Germany and Russia

On Monday, 14 November 2011, a delegation from the Syrian National Council held a meeting with the Foreign Minister of Germany, Guido Westerwelle, in the German Foreign Ministry. Mr. Westerwelle confirmed full solidarity with the Syrian people’s demands for freedom and democracy, and his concern over the dangerous violations that the regime is committing. Mr. Westerwelle said “we cannot remain quiet to the human rights violations in Syria.” Mr. Westerwelle also discussed with the delegation, lead by Dr. Burhan Ghalioun, details of a meeting of ministers of European nations during which it was decided to approve additional expanded sanctions against the Syrian regime. Furthermore, Minister Westerwelle commended the efforts undertaken by the National Council, and welcomed the decisions of the Arab League to suspend the Syrian regime’s membership in the bodies of the League and to impose sanctions on it.

On its part, the delegation of the Syrian National Council spoke about the developments in Syria, especially after the decisions of the Arab League and the 450 fallen Syrian heroes killed by the bullets of the regime’s security and militia forces. The German side was handed an extensive file on human rights violations. Dr. Ghalioun said that “the Syrian Revolution is a moral revolution, which is against exclusion, and a new government cannot come and exclude any component of the Syrian society.” The two sides discussed the vision of the Council regarding the transition of power and the form of the next stage in Syria. The delegation also held meetings with Christoph Heusgen, foreign and security policy advisor to Chancellor Angela Merkel; Ambassador Volkmar Wenzel, the Minister’s representative to the Arab World; and Andreas Reinicke, the German ambassador in Syria.

Relatedly, on Tuesday, 15 November 2011, the Syrian National Council delegation met with the Foreign Minister of Russia, Sergey Lavrov in response to an official invitation, where the latter expressed his concern over the dangerous situation in Syria and said “we support most of the decisions of the Arab League, including the necessity to send international observers and allow media outlets to enter Syria.” On his part, Dr. Ghalioun confirmed the need to adopt means to protect Syrian civilians and asked Russia not to use its veto power with the Security Council’s resolution condemning the violence, because doing so would affect the image of Russia before the Syrian people, who see Russia’s recent positions supportive of the crimes of the Assad regime.

The delegation also met with the Deputy Foreign Minister of Russia, Mikhail Bogdanov; the Vice Chairman of the Russian Federation, Ilyas Umakhanov; and several other Russian officials. The meetings concluded with a press conference at the Interfax Press Center, during which the Council’s delegation provided its political vision for overthrowing the Syrian regime and achieving a peaceful transfer of power.

For more information or commentary, please contact Ausama Monajed, member of the Syrian National Council. Email: