Russia has accused the West of “distorting” the peace plan for Syria endorsed in Geneva over the weekend.
The Geneva ministerial conference of the “action group” on Saturday agreed that a “transitional government body with full executive powers” will be set up in Syria to end the ongoing conflict.
“Unfortunately, some Syrian opposition representatives refused to accept the Geneva decisions, while some of the Western participants in the Geneva meeting started publicly distorting the agreements that have been reached,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told a news conference in Moscow on Tuesday.
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said on Sunday a text agreed in Geneva implied that President Bashar al-Assad would have to step down.
Moscow strongly rejected this reading of the Geneva plan. Mr. Lavrov said the plan did not imply at all that the Syrian leader should go and added that it set down no precondition excluding any group from the proposed national unity government.
“These [Geneva] agreements are not there to be interpreted. They mean exactly what is said in the communiqué and we need to follow the agreements that were made.”
Instead of twisting the agreements, world powers should put concerted pressure on the warring sides in the Syrian conflict “with the sole goal of making them to halt violence and sit down for talks”, said the Russian Foreign Minister.
“We are convinced the Geneva [agreements] gives us good chances to achieve this, and we should make the best use of them.”
Mr. Lavrov said he would host a Syrian opposition delegation in Moscow next week to promote an end to violence and start a dialogue.