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Syria asks Russia for economic aid

Last Updated: Saturday, August 4, 2012 - 16:36

Moscow: Visiting senior Syrian officials have asked Russia for financial loans and supplies of oil products.

Syria`s Deputy Prime Minister Qadri Jamil, who led a delegation consisting of Syrian Cabinet ministers in a visit to Russia, on Friday told reporters in Moscow that Russia had promised to provide financial assistance to Syria.

The delegation was in talks with the Russian officials and business leaders on ways to alleviate the consequences of Western sanctions against Syria.

Jamil said Damascus wants to get diesel oil, gas and other refined oil products from Russia in exchange for Syrian crude supplies.

"We have reached mutual understanding on ways to resolve the problems," said Jamil at a press conference, who stopped short of disclosing details as for how the problems would be worked out.

"Illegal sanctions have negatively affected the Syrian economy and we asked Russia for help. Russia wants to help Syria," Jamil said.

Syrian Financial Minister Mohammed Jleilati, another member on the Syrian visiting delegation, confirmed Damascus had asked Moscow to provide a loan to help Syria`s economy.

"Russia promised to consider this request," the Syrian minister told reporters following the talks in Moscow.

While reiterating the urgency of stopping violence in Syria, the First Deputy Foreign Minister Andrei Denisov of Russia stressed Syria`s future must be made by the Syrians themselves through a broad political dialogue without any preconditions, according to a statement given by the Russian Foreign Ministry.

"He (Denisov) emphasised the importance of consolidated efforts by the international community and by all the parties of the Syrian conflict" to achieve a sooner ceasefire in that conflict-plagued country, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in the statement.


First Published: Saturday, August 4, 2012 - 16:36

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