Takht-Ravanchi censures Washington’s sanctions on Syria as ‘shameful’

All forces present in Syria without permission must leave, Iran’s UN envoy says

July 25, 2020 - 13:9

TEHRAN – All foreign forces who have entered Syria with the permission of the Damascus government must leave the country, the Iranian ambassador to the UN said on Thursday. 

Majid Takht-Ravanchi said all should fully respect Syria’s national sovereignty, political independence, unity and territorial integrity.

Following is the text of Takht-Ravanchi’s speech to the UN Security Council on Syria:

On July 1st, a virtual meeting of the Summit of Astana Format was held to discuss different aspects of the situation in Syria.

Following discussions on the latest developments, the Presidents issued a joint statement, where they emphasized their strong commitments to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of Syria; opposed illegitimate self-rule initiatives and separatist agendas; renounced the imposition of unilateral sanctions on Syria; rejected the occupation of Syrian Golan and condemned the relevant U.S. decision; considered the Israeli military attacks in Syria as destabilizing and violating its sovereignty and territorial integrity; and reaffirmed their determination to cooperate in eliminating all UNSC-designated terrorist groups.

We once again stress that the sovereignty, political independence, unity and territorial integrity of Syria must be fully respected by all, and accordingly, all foreign forces whose presence is not permitted by the Syrian Government must leave the Syrian territory.

The prominent example is the occupation of parts of Syria by the U.S. forces, who continue looting the Syrian oil and wealth as well as supporting and shielding terrorist groups under the mask of combatting terrorism.

Similarly, Israel’s acts of aggression against Syria are in gross violation of international law and the UN Charter, in the face of which, the Syrian Government has a sovereign right to decide how and when to exercise its inherent right to individual or collective self-defense. Such aggressions must come to an end.

The occupation of Syrian Occupied Golan by Israel is illegal, and the recognition by the U.S. of Golan’s annexation by Israel is null and void. Condemning such unlawful irresponsible acts, we stress that Golan is and will remain a part and parcel of the Syrian territory.

We reiterate our principled position that there is no military solution to the Syrian conflict and it must only be resolved through a Syrian-led and Syrian-owned, UN-facilitated political process.

Underlining that the establishment of the Constitutional Committee is an achievement of the Astana format, and welcoming the agreement to hold its next meeting in August, we support the Committee’s work. Committee’s activities must continue without any external pressure, and any possible assistance thereto, even by the United Nations, must be extended only at the request of the Committee itself in accordance with its ROP

We stress once again that the right to determine the future of Syria belongs exclusively to Syrians. We welcome the successful holding of the recent Parliamentary election in Syria which is a step forward in this direction.

Today, the Syrian people must confront the challenges presented by both the conflict and the COVID-19 pandemic. However, what deteriorates this situation is the recent imposition of inhumane unilateral sanctions by the U.S. against the Syrian people which is a truly shameful act against a nation who, amid almost a decade-long conflict, suffers from the coronavirus pandemic.

We strongly condemn this inhumane and irresponsible move by the United States and urge the international community to raise its voice in rejecting this shameful policy and calling for the removal of all these immoral sanctions.

The international community should not leave the Syrian people alone in their struggle to overcome the economic problems resulting from these inhumane sanctions.

We also highlight the need to facilitate safe and voluntary return of refugees and IDPs to their original places of residence in Syria.

Calling for the international community’s contribution in this regard, we underline that any such assistance including for Syria’s reconstruction must not be politicized or linked to the fulfillment of certain conditions.

MH/PA

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