Syrian President Bashar al-Assad welcomed Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister, Faisal bin Farhan, who arrived in Damascus on Tuesday, marking the first visit by a high-ranking Saudi official since diplomatic relations were severed in 2011 due to the outbreak of the Syrian revolution.
Bin Farhan landed at Damascus International Airport and was greeted by Mansour Azzam, the Minister of Presidential Affairs. According to the local newspaper Al-Watan, the Saudi foreign minister is on a working visit that will last several hours.
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The Saudi Foreign Ministry stated that Bin Farhan’s visit to Syria is part of the kingdom’s desire to achieve a political solution to the Syrian crisis that would bring an end to all its consequences, safeguard Syria’s unity, security, and stability, preserve its Arab identity, and reintegrate it into its Arab environment in a way that benefits its people.
This visit comes a few days after Saudi Arabia welcomed Syrian Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad for the first such visit in 12 years. During the meeting, both sides expressed their willingness to resume consular services and flights between the two countries.
Mekdad’s visit preceded a meeting of foreign ministers from the GCC, Jordan, Egypt, and Iraq in Jeddah to discuss the possibility of the Syrian regime’s return to the Arab League.
However, the consultative meeting did not result in a decision to reintegrate the Syrian regime into the Arab League due to objections from Arab nations, primarily Qatar, Kuwait, and Morocco, as well as Western opposition to normalizing relations with President Bashar al-Assad.
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.