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EU refuses to attend international conference on Syrian refugees

Press TV | November 11, 2020

The European Union (EU) has refused to attend an international conference aimed at putting an end to the suffering of Syrian refugees and facilitating their return to their homeland.

EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell announced on Tuesday that the EU representatives would not take part in the International Conference on the Return of Syrian Refugees, which is set to commence with the participation of several countries in the Syrian capital of Damascus on Wednesday.

“A number of EU member states’ foreign ministers and the High Representative have received an invitation to a conference on the theme of refugee returns, on 11-12 November, in Damascus. The EU and its member states will not attend this conference,” Borrell said in a statement.

Syria’s official news agency SANA reported that the two-day conference is to address the current situation in Syria, review conditions for the return of refugees and the obstacles hindering their return, and also aims to set the appropriate conditions for their return.

The conference will also discuss the humanitarian aid, rebuilding the infrastructure, and the cooperation between the scientific and educational organizations in Syria in the post-war stage.

In his statement, Borrell censured the conference as “premature” and said the first priority should be to make it safe for the Syrian refugees to go back to the conflict-ravaged country.

The EU official said the 27-member bloc believes that “the priority at present is real action to create conditions for safe, voluntary, dignified and sustainable return of refugees and internally displaced persons to their areas of origin.”

Insisting that no Syrian refugee should be forced to go back, Borrell said, “Conditions inside Syria at present do not lend themselves to the promotion of large-scale voluntary return.”

China, Russia, Iran, Lebanon, the United Arab Emirates, Pakistan and Oman are among the countries that will participate. The United Nations will participate as an observer.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said in a video conference with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin on Monday that the return of Syrian refugees is a priority.

Assad underlined that “the largest part of the refugees” is willing to return to their homeland after the Syrian government set things right for their return.

The Syrian leader also stated that the biggest obstacle facing the return of refugees is the Western sanctions imposed on Syria, both on its government and people.

Putin, for his part, said Moscow would continue efforts to encourage a political solution to the crisis in Syria and that it preserves the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Arab country.

Some 5.6 million Syrians have been forced to flee abroad as refugees, mostly to the neighboring countries of Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt and Iraq.

Moreover, one million Syrian children have been born as refugees ever since the foreign-backed militancy began in their country back in March 2011.

November 11, 2020 - Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , ,

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