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S. Arabia asks Russia to stop supplying Assad with arms

"The Russian President speaks about Syria's atrocities as though [Moscow] was not an essential factor behind their occurrence," al-Faisal said.

29.03.2015
S. Arabia asks Russia to stop supplying Assad with arms

CAIRO

Saudi Arabia's Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal on Sunday called on Russian President Vladimir Putin – a key ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad – to follow through with his own letter to Arab leaders in which he welcomed a swift settlement for the Syrian crisis.

"The Russian President speaks about Syria's atrocities as though [Moscow] was not an essential factor behind their occurrence," al-Faisal said.

"[Moscow] supplies the Syrian regime with strategic weapons it uses in fighting its own people in violation of Russian laws which ban the sale of arms to countries that use them for offense rather than defense," he added following the Arab summit, which was held for two days in the Egyptian resort city of Sharm el-Sheikh.

He said the Syrian regime had lost legitimacy.

In a letter to the Arab summit, Putin said he backed peaceful settlements for conflicts in Middle East countries, including Syria.

"We consider the soonest possible settlement of the crisis situations in Syria, Libya, and Yemen on the basis of the principles of international law, by means of broad dialogue and search for national accord to be rather important," Putin said in the letter, which was read out during the summit by Arab League chief Nabil al-Arabi.

Al-Assad's fate in Syria's political future had been behind the collapse of the UN-backed Geneva talks between 2012 and 2014.

The talks aimed at reaching a political settlement for the crisis in Syria.

The Arab summit came in the wake of a Saudi-led military offensive against the Shiite Houthi group in Yemen.

Houthis have been controlling Yemeni capital Sanaa since September of 2014 and moved to extend their influence in other provinces.

Gulf states accuse them of receiving support from Iran.

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