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EU to assess position on Syria after Arab League’s readmission

Bloc currently rules out normalizing relations, lifting sanctions against Assad regime

Agnes Szucs  | 08.05.2023 - Update : 08.05.2023
EU to assess position on Syria after Arab League’s readmission


The EU on Monday said members will discuss their position towards Syria after the Arab League reinstated the country’s membership.

Officials will assess this week the decision of the Arab League on readmitting Syria and its “potential implications” for EU foreign policy, Peter Stano, the bloc's spokesperson for foreign affairs, told reporters.

He explained that EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell will hold talks “with the partners in the region to see the reasons for this decision or expectations from this decision.”

Stano recalled that the EU currently rules out the normalization of relations with the Assad regime and the lifting of sanctions “unless there is a movement towards a political solution in line with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions” and “stopping the persecution and oppression of Syrian people.”

He stressed that the EU’s “position is not dogmatic” and diplomats will discuss if the 27 members are in consensus to adjust to this approach.

Arab League on Sunday decided to reinstate Syria’s membership after 12 years of suspension over the regime’s brutal crackdown on pro-democracy protests, which led to a civil war.

Germany rules out normalization 'for now'

Meanwhile, Germany said appropriate conditions were not in place to normalize relations with Syria.

The Syrian regime continues to block any progress in the political process and commits the most serious human rights violations against its own people on a daily basis, Foreign Ministry spokesman Christofer Burger told a regular press on Monday.

"In this respect, unfortunately, nothing has changed in the reality on the ground, which would allow us to provide support, for example for reconstruction, to lift sanctions and, from our point of view, there are currently no prerequisites for a dignified return of refugees."

*Oliver Towfigh Nia contributed to this story from Berlin

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