Many in Syria had questioned Russia’s motives for the region after the publication of a draft constitution which appeared to suggest that federalisation might be an option in the future, particularly in Kurdish regions. Syrian Envoy to the UN, Dr. Bashar al- Jaafari patently rejected such proposals.
However, Lavrov made it clear that the draft proposals were meant to serve as a ‘conversation starter’, rather than a one-way guide to Syria’s future.
As reported by Syrian Al-Masdar News, Lavrov cited UN Resolution 2254 as the document providing clear international legitimacy for a peace process in Syria. Speaking of the resolution, Lavrov stated:
“Resolution 2254 reflects our principled stance on the ways to untangling the Syrian crisis,” Lavrov said. “It suggests that the Syrian people alone has the right to determine its future without any interference from the outside and it fully applies to President Bashar Assad’s destiny.”
“I’d like to reiterate that only the Syrian citizens have the power to decide on what kind of a country they should live in and who should stand at the head of it.”
Lavrov’s statements put to rest any suspicions that Russia was somehow changing course in respect of its support for the legitimate government or Syria and for a peace process which guarantees the stability, integrity and ultimately secular and pluralist nature of the Syrian Arab Republic.
Russia remains committed to her Arab ally in spite of turbulent events in the wider world.