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What Happened Over the Weekend

Meetings at the United Nations, criticism of the US presence, the Nasib Border Crossing and an attack in Gaziantep. Catch up on everything that happened in Syria over the weekend.
What Happened Over the Weekend

1. Syria’s Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem has met with the UN Secretary General and a number of his counterparts on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York. SANA reported that Muallem met with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on the sidelines of the 73rd session of United Nations General Assembly in New York on Friday. Talks during the meeting focused on the latest political and field developments in Syria, particularly the latest agreement on Idleb, in addition to the efforts exerted to form a committee on discussing the constitution. Muallem also met with the Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, and the Indian Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj. On the meeting with Lavrov, SANA reported that talks tackled developments related to the Idleb agreement, with Muallem stressing the need to adhere and implement it. They also discussed forming a committee to discuss the current constitution, with both sides affirming that this process belongs to the Syrians and must be led by Syria.

2. Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov said that Western states are working to topple legitimate governments and replace international reference points to achieve their own political interests. According to The Syria Times, Lavrov said, in a speech at the United Nations General Assembly, that the West had used false pretenses to wage wars in Iraq, Libya, and Syria, pointing to the tripartite aggression waged against Syria in April, following allegations of chemical weapons use. He stressed that the international community must help return the displaced Syrians to their homeland without using double standards.

3. On Saturday, the Jordanian government denied reports about the reopening of the border crossing between Jordan and war-torn Syria. According to Al-Souria Net, Jordanian government spokesperson Jumana Ghunaimat said that the “Nasib Border Crossing is still closed and has not been opened to the movement of goods or passengers”. She added that technical meetings to open the border are still underway, but the reopening of the terminal “requires the availability of infrastructure as well as logistics and technical measures.” Earlier on Saturday, the official Syrian news agency SANA said the border crossing had been opened, before replacing the news story with a report saying that preparations have been made to open the border crossing on Oct. 10, 2018.

4. A former female Syrian detainee was severely attacked by three unknown men in the Turkish city of Gaziantep. Zaman al-Wasl reported that Aida al-Haj Yousuf, who had been released as part of prisoner exchange, is living with her children in Gaziantep. She was the victim of a surprise attack by three men who beat her in front of passersby. They then escaped before they could be identified. It is strongly suspected that pro-regime men were behind the attack.

This article was edited by The Syrian Observer. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.

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