World Bulletin / News Desk
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Sunday said his country supports Kuwaiti efforts to end the ongoing crisis in inter-Arab relations, saying the region’s many conflicts must be resolved through dialogue.
Lavrov made the remarks at a joint press conference held with Saudi counterpart Adel al-Jubeir in the Saudi city of Jeddah.
Declaring that Moscow sought “new horizons for cooperation with Riyadh”, the Russian FM stated: “There are no contradictions with Saudi Arabia regarding how to resolve disputes in the region.”
In June, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain all severed diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing it of supporting terrorist groups.
The four countries also imposed an embargo on Qatar, demanding that it meet a long list of demands -- including one for the closure of Doha-based broadcaster Al Jazeera -- or face further sanctions.
Qatar, for its part, has staunchly refused to comply, denying charges that it supports terrorism and describing the ongoing embargo as a violation of international law and an infringement of its national sovereignty.
At Sunday’s press conference in Jeddah, al-Jubeir said Riyadh’s position vis-à-vis Qatar “will remain the same until Doha meets our demands”.
He went on to assert that the Russian and Saudi position on the issue “are largely identical”.
Al-Jubeir’s assertion comes a day after Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman received a phone call from Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, in which the latter reportedly said he wanted to resolve the dispute through dialogue.
Addressing the ongoing conflict in Syria, Lavrov praised Riyadh’s stated support for the Syrian “political process” and the establishment of de-escalation zones across the war-torn country.
“Next week will likely see an agreement to establish a new zone in the countryside of [Syria’s] Idlib province,” he said, also stressing Moscow’s support for Saudi efforts to unify Syrian opposition factions.
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