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Sikorski reaffirms role in Syrian weapons deal

PR dla Zagranicy
Nick Hodge 11.09.2013 12:41
Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski has claimed credit for the potential dismantling of Syria's chemical weapons arsenal without recourse to US-led military strikes.

Radoslaw Sikorski: photo - wikipedia

“If my suggestions have helped someone change their mind, or prompt reflection, then we have cause for some small satisfaction,” he told journalists on Wednesday, as cited by the Polish Press Agency (PAP).

His remarks followed coverage in The New York Times and Die Welt that pointed to Sikorski's role in the prospective deal, with Russia proposing on Monday that Syria hand over its chemical weapons arsenal.

Sikorski had himself written on his Twitter profile on Monday that he was “pleased that Russia has taken up Poland's suggestion of her role in dismantling Syria's chemical weapons arsenal.”

The New York Times wrote that Sikorski raised the question of Russia's potential role in the matter in a telephone conversation with US Secretary of State John Kerry on 29 August.

Telephone conversations between Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov ensued following comments made by Kerry in London about a possible handover of Syria's chemical weapons arsenal.

President Barack Obama has called on Congress to delay a vote on military strikes, in the light of the potential handover.

Nevertheless, even if Syrian leader President Barshar al-Assad agrees to the policy, the prospect of a cessation of hostilities within Syria itself remains distant, with both the government and insurgent forces locked in a struggle that shows scant sign of abating.

The United Nations has estimated that over 100,000 people have died in Syria as a result of the conflict since March 2011.

Prime Minister Tusk has stated that Poland will not take part in any military actions in Syria.

Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Sikorski flew to Bucharest this morning for talks concerning the forthcoming Eastern Partnership summit in November, during which Moldova, Georgia and Armenia are due to sign an Association Agreement with the EU. (nh)

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