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Russian FM: Syria’s return to Arab League to resolved as soon as possible

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has hoped for the restoration of Syria’s membership in the Arab League, saying Arab nations would be able to reunify their positions and resolve their differences if Damascus is readmitted to the organization.

Lavrov made the remarks during a press conference with the foreign ministers of Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Iraq, and Sudan — members of the Arab Contact Group on Ukraine — in the Russian capital city of Moscow on Monday.

“We expressed our hope for Syria’s return to the Arab League. The issue will be resolved as soon as possible as it will help Arabs unify their positions in the region and the whole world,” the top Russian diplomat said.

The Arab League suspended Syria’s membership in November 2011, citing an alleged crackdown by Damascus on opposition protests. Syria has denounced the move as “illegal and a violation of the organization’s charter.”

Syria was one of the six founding members of the Arab League in 1945. In recent months, an increasing number of countries and political parties have called for the reversal of its suspension from the Arab League.

Early this year, the secretary general of the central committee of the Palestinian Fatah political party denounced the suspension as “disgraceful” for the entire Arab world, especially as the war-ravaged country is a founding member of the regional organization.

Speaking at a press conference in the Syrian capital of Damascus on January 10, Jibril Rajoub added that Syria must return to the Arab League.

He said that his visit to Damascus at the head of a high-ranking Palestinian delegation is a turning point in light of the Israeli regime’s stepped-up aggression and attempts to liquidate the Palestinian cause.

Rajoub noted that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas plans to visit Syria in the near future, extending his gratitude to the Syrian people and leadership for their hospitality towards Palestinians living there and for their firm stances vis-à-vis the Palestinian cause despite all the difficulties they have gone through over the past years.

Last December, the speaker of the Jordanian House of Representatives, Abdul Karim al-Daghmi, called for Syria to be fully reinstated to the Arab League when Algeria hosts the next Arab summit in March.

“We, as the Arab Parliament, must put pressure on our governments and ask our leaders to green-light Syria’s return to the Arab League when the next summit convenes in Algeria,” Daghmi said in a press conference on the sidelines of a session of the Arab Parliament in Amman on December 23.

He noted, “It is now high time for Syria to return to its Arab origins and rejoin the Arab League.”

Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune has also called for the restoration of Syria’s membership in the Arab League, stating that Arab nations would not be able to reunify and resolve their differences as long as Damascus is excluded from the regional organization.

Speaking at a joint press conference with his Tunisian counterpart, Kais Saied, in Tunis on December 15, Tebboune said Syria should rejoin the Arab League in order for Arabs to unify again.

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