Middle EastSaudi ArabiaSyria

Syria rebuffs statement issued after OIC Mecca summit

Syria has rejected a final communique issued following a Saudi-hosted summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Mecca, saying it reflected the submission of some participating countries to their masters in Washington.

A source at the Syrian Foreign Ministry told Syria’s official SANA news agency on Sunday that the final statement issued at the end of the summit showed unrelenting dependence of some OIC member states on the United States and its cronies.

“The closing communique of the summit only expresses the obvious and continuous dependence of these countries on their masters in the West,” the source said

Harking back to the Saudi-backed Geneva proposals “and the idea of a government transitional body (…) confirms the chronic blindness of participating states to developments” in Syria in recent years, the source added.

The remarks came after the OIC backed an outdated proposal of the transitional body integrating foreign-backed opposition elements in the violence-hit Arab country

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The term “political transition” is interpreted by the foreign-backed opposition as the ouster of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad or at least erosion of his powers.

In 2016, Assad had offered the notion of a unity government conclusive of both government and opposition while rejecting a “transitional body with full executive powers.”    

Saudi Arabia and the Israeli regime remain hostile to President al-Assad government, who has made a comeback after liberating almost two-thirds of the country’s territory from foreign-backed militant groups in recent years

On Saturday, Saudi Arabia tried to hijack the summit’s agenda for its Iran-bashing campaign, creating sharp differences among OIC member states on a gamut of issues. 

But the final statement left out the kingdom’s political grandstanding, instead stressing support for a future Palestinian state. Elsewhere in its statement, the OIC rejected any decision to change the legal and demographic status of Syria’s Golan Heights, especially the recent US move to recognize Israeli “sovereignty” over the occupied territory.

The organization called for Israel’s complete withdrawal from the Golan and its return to the 1967 borders in accordance with UN Security Council resolutions.

Back in March, US President Donald Trump signed a controversial decree recognizing Israeli “sovereignty” over the occupied Golan in a move which is in obvious contravention of international law.

In response, Syria’s government said “it was not waiting for support or a statement from this summit or others like it to assert its right over the Golan,” SANA said.

Damascus has also stressed that it will liberate all its territories occupied by Israel or by foreign-backed Takfiri terrorist groups by all available means.

Syria has been gripped by foreign-backed militancy since March 2011. The Syrian government says the Israeli regime and its Western and regional allies are aiding Takfiri terrorist groups wreaking havoc in the country.

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