Russia seeks international efforts to save Iraq, Syria

Last Updated: Monday, July 7, 2014 - 21:21

Moscow: The international community should join hands in preventing Iraq and Syria from disintegration, a senior Russian diplomat said Monday.

"We proceed from the fact that Iraq was and will be a single state... Russia hopes all its Western and regional partners will unite in our common desire to help Iraqis to preserve their territorial integrity and sovereignty," Russia`s Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov told reporters, adding that the same applies to Syria.

He said terrorists in the Middle East could create new state-like entities based on "highly aggressive Islamic religious philosophy and ideology" if Iraqi and Syrian governments succumb to extremist actions, according to Xinhua.

"To motivate the Syrians for more productive negotiations, there is an idea to invite the countries capable of positively influencing them," Bogdanov said, citing Turkey, Iran, Egypt and Saudi Arabia among the countries which could join Russian and US efforts to continue the Geneva talks over a settlement to the Syrian crisis.

The Islamic State in Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS), an Al Qaeda splinter group, has recently proclaimed the establishment of an "Islamic caliphate" straddling Syria and Iraq, and changed its name to the Islamic State.

The ISIS said its goal is to establish an Islamic state in Iraq and Syria to fight the Shia government of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and that of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.


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First Published: Monday, July 7, 2014 - 21:21

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