UAE urges action to stop ‘repressive Damascus’

Emirati Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed al-Nahyan speaks during a joint press conference with his Australian counterpart part of his official visit on May 19, 2013 in Abu Dhabi. (AFP)

The United Arab Emirates on Sunday called for political action to stop what it called “the repressive machine” in Damascus, ahead of an international conference aimed at resolving the Syrian conflict.

“We call on all concerned parties to take decisive political action to stop the repressive machine in Damascus,” UAE Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed al-Nahayan said at a news conference with his Australian counterpart Bob Carr.

“The international community cannot remain silent and inactive about the humanitarian situation” affecting Syrians, he said.

However, Sheikh Abdullah also questioned the ability of the world powers to take such action, saying “they find it difficult to make a decision on humanitarian aid” for Syrians.

Carr said Australia wanted to see a ceasefire and a peaceful political transition in Syria as he called for an agreement among the international community to provide humanitarian assistance to civilian victims of the war.

On May 8, the United States and Russia agreed to push both sides in Syria to find an end to the bloodshed, offering to hold an international conference in search of peace.

However, a positive outcome to the conference will difficult to achieve, with the Syrian opposition insisting on Bashar al-Assad’s departure before any talks and the embattled president determined to remain in power.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:40 - GMT 06:40