According to Saudi Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan al-Saud, a consensus is emerging among Arab nations that isolating Syria is futile and that there is a need for dialogue with Damascus to address humanitarian issues, including the repatriation of refugees.
During his speech at the Munich Security Forum, the Saudi minister stated, “There is an increasing consensus among not only the GCC countries but also the Arab world that the current situation is unsustainable,” as reported by Reuters.
Possible Saudi-Syrian Rapprochement: Saudi Foreign Minister to Visit Syria in Coming Days
Faisal bin Farhan stated, “Given the absence of a clear path towards achieving the ultimate political solution, an alternative strategy is emerging to address the plight of Syrian refugees in neighbouring countries, as well as the suffering of civilians, particularly after the catastrophic earthquake that affected Syria and Turkey.”
Faisal emphasized that initiating dialogue with the Damascus government is crucial to achieving the most pressing humanitarian objectives, such as the repatriation of refugees. “At some point, talks with the Syrian government must be held to accomplish these critical goals,” he stated.
When asked about reports that he might visit Damascus after his Emirati and Jordanian counterparts visited in the aftermath of the quake, Faisal said he would “not comment on rumours about his visit to Syria.”
Three days ago, an informed source told Russia’s Sputnik news agency that Saudi Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan would visit the Syrian capital Damascus in the next few days.
The next day, Russia Today quoted its sources, stressing that “there is no talk in Damascus currently about a visit by Saudi Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan to the Syrian capital Damascus, after the news that talked about an upcoming visit to him.”
The Saudi foreign minister’s statements at the Munich Security Forum on Saturday reflect a shift in Saudi Arabia’s policy towards Damascus, particularly in comparison to the early stages of the Syrian war, as he publicly advocated for initiating dialogue with the Syrian government.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.