Syria’s Assad welcomes ‘optimistic stance’ from Arab nations

DAMASCUS: Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on Wednesday welcomed “any optimistic stance” from Arab nations, together with many who severed ties with Damascus for the reason that outbreak of its civil battle.

His remarks got here throughout a gathering with Jordanian International Minister Ayman Safadi in Damascus, after a 7.8-magnitude earthquake rocked Turkiye and Syria on February 6, leaving a mixed demise toll of practically 40,000 individuals.

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Safadi’s go to is the second by a high Arab diplomat to Syria for the reason that quake, after Emirati International Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al-Nahyan additionally met Assad in Damascus on Sunday.

“The Syrian individuals welcome and reply to any optimistic stance in direction of them, particularly from the Arab brothers,” Assad mentioned, in accordance a press release from his workplace.

He additional emphasised the significance of “bilateral cooperation between Syria and Jordan”.

Jordan was among the many first international locations to answer the quake in Syria, sending no less than three planes and dozens of vehicles laden with support.

“We’ve been cooperating for a very long time, however we extremely recognize this go to as a result of it comes at an applicable time,” Syrian International Minister Faisal Mekdad informed Jordan’s Al Mamlaka TV after the go to, hailing Amman’s “beneficiant support”.

Jordan is among the many few Arab international locations that maintained diplomatic ties with Damascus even after Syria’s 2011 suspension from the Arab League over bloodshed in its civil battle.

Communications had been nonetheless restricted and official visits had been halted for a number of years till June 2021, when a Syrian ministerial delegation visited Jordan.

Jordan’s King Abdullah II additionally referred to as Assad after the quake, having held in October 2021 his first official name with the Syrian president for the reason that battle started.

Analysts have considered the momentum after the quake as an “alternative” for Assad to return to the Arab fold as leaders have reached out to supply support.

On Tuesday, a Saudi aircraft carrying support landed in Syria’s second metropolis Aleppo – the primary in additional than a decade of battle and severed diplomatic ties.

Following the quake, Assad additionally acquired a name from Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi providing assist, their first official change since Sisi assumed workplace in 2014.

Equally, the ruler of Bahrain, which re-established diplomatic relations with Syria in 2018, referred to as Assad of their first official dialog in additional than a decade.