President of the Syrian Opposition Coalition (SOC), Salem Al-Meslet, on Wednesday met with the US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern and the Levant affairs Ethan Goldrich and his accompanying delegation in Istanbul, and discussed with them the latest on the ground and political developments in Syria.
The meeting brought together SOC’s Vice-presidents Abdulahad Astepho, Abdel Hakim Bashar, and Ruba Habboush, Secretary-General Haitham Rahma, Director of NEA and SE Affairs at the US State Department Maria Olson, Director of START Terry Flynn, and political officer at START Randall Kaailau.
Al-Meslet stressed the importance of the US role in revitalizing the political process, opening all tracks of UN resolution 2254, refusal to reduce the political process to the Constitutional Committee, and refusal to reduce the Syrian crisis to humanitarian issues.
Al-Meslet talked about the “disappointing” results of the latest session of the Constitutional Committee due to the Assad regime’s obstructionism and its continued disruption of any serious step in the course of the political process.
Moreover, Al-Meslet pointed out that the Assad regime believes only in the military approach and in shedding more Syrian blood, as well as continues to receive political and military support from Russia and Iran. He pointed out that the United States can play an important role in preventing more crimes and contribute to pushing the political process forward in order to implement UN resolutions and achieve the aspirations of the Syrian people for freedom, dignity and democracy.
For his part, Mr. Goldrich spoke about his country’s priorities in Syria, stressing that Washington is committed to supporting the implementation of UN Resolution 2254 and condemning the Assad regime for committing war crimes in Syria and its use of chemical weapons.
The US diplomat made it clear that the US is well aware that the political process is stalled due to the Assad regime’s intransigence and refusal to seriously engage. He stressed that his country rejects normalization with the Assad regime and does not support those who normalize ties with it. He also stressed that the US will maintain sanctions on the symbols of the Assad regime, and does not see that the current conditions in Syria are appropriate for the return of refugees to their homes.
(Source: SOC’s Media Department)