JEDDAH: Syria’s “battle against terrorism is almost over” after more than seven years of civil war, the Assad regime’s Foreign Minister Walid Al-Moallem told the UN on Saturday .
He pledged that Syria would be free from all “illegitimate” foreign troops, again rejected international investigations that found Damascus had used chemical weapons during the conflict, and called on all refugees to return home, which he said was a priority for his government.
Bahia Mardini, founder of Syrian House, an organization that helps Syrians in the UK, told Arab News Syria’s future could not be built without accountability, and the torment of the Syrians could not be ended without the application of international law.
The Assad regime denied all the accusations that had been proved by the international community, she said. “Major powers have stressed that Bashar Assad’s regime is responsible for the use of chemical weapons and everything that happens in Syria.”
The criminals “must not escape punishment and the regime must pay for its actions,” she said.
Syrian opposition spokesman Yahya Al-Aridi told Arab News any military solution “would not take us anywhere and not bring Syria back to life.”
“A clear push on the part of the US for finding a real solution and getting Iran and Daesh out of Syria” was required, he said.
Meanwhile, the opposition group Jaysh Al-Izza on Saturday rejected the agreement between Russia and Turkey for a demilitarized zone in Idlib province.