Syria: Germany Joins the Call of the Eleven

Posted on Sep 7 2013 - 1:14pm by Admin

G20, eleven countries have requested a “strong international response” in Syria. Germany was the only European G20 countries not to have signed.


Germany has decided to join the call for a “strong” international reaction to the chemical attack in Syria , which was signed by eleven countries, including the United States, the top of the G20 . The announcement on the sidelines of an EU meeting in Vilnius by the German Foreign Minister Guido Westervelle was greeted by his French counterpart, Laurent Fabius, who said that “the fact that Europe is together is a good thing” . The call of the eleven does not specifically mention the military option, but in a joint statement claiming a “strong international response” against Damascus, which is “clearly” responsible for the use of chemical weapons against its population. Germany was the only European member of the G20 countries not to have signed this appeal that “represents the beginning of a consensus” that “could well be politically useful when the decision strikes will be taken,” said a European diplomat.

The U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry arrived at night in Lithuania, which holds the EU presidency, met Saturday morning’s President Dalia Grybauskaite. She expressed “support for the declaration of the eleven countries” at the summit of the G20 called for a “strong” reaction after the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime . Kerry responded that the United States was “very grateful for this support and for the other (countries) for the efforts of Syria.”

The chief U.S. diplomat then found his counterparts from 28 EU countries, mostly reluctant to armed action against Damascus without UN approval. An official from the State Department said expect with European ministers “precise and detailed discussions,” pointing “divisions within the EU,” while acknowledging the support of France and Denmark. Europeans will try to agree on a joint statement to be issued after the meeting. “A difficult task, because the differences are significant,” said a European diplomat.

A Long-Awaited Report

John Kerry will visit in the afternoon in Paris – propelled him to the first U.S. ally on the Syrian track – and London before returning Monday to the United States. John Kerry is very advanced for two weeks to extol the merits of a punitive operation against Damascus accused of a massacre of chemical weapons on August 21. President Barack Obama, who must go to the Americans Tuesday, decided last Saturday of the principle of “targeted and limited” strikes against Syria, but not before the green light from Congress. It will sit again on Monday. The same day, the Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Moallem will be in Moscow, ally of Damascus.

The international community also expects that the UN publishes a yet undetermined date, the report of its experts who inspected the suburbs of Damascus attacked with chemical weapons. Germany on Friday called on the UN to go public “as soon as possible.” In the eyes of most EU countries, this report is indeed an essential step that could independently confirm the allegations of poison gas attacks. Washington and Paris hope to overcome the reluctance of governments who are reluctant to engage on the basis of information from national intelligence services.

Very Reluctant French

Given the appeal signed by twelve countries now, Russian President Vladimir Putin, the main ally of Damascus, said the Moscow line was shared by several major countries, including China, India and Brazil. Diplomatic contacts will remain intense during the weekend, especially in France where Hollande meet Lebanese President Michel Suleiman in Nice. The French president faces skepticism of his opinion, since 68% of the French are against military involvement in Paris, according to a survey of the institute Ifop for Le Figaro published Saturday.

Anxious to avoid intervention, the Pope called François Christians, other religions and non-believers in a day of fasting and prayer on Saturday . “What rises sharply in all the earth cry for peace!” He told the pope, who is chairing a peace vigil four hours on St. Peter’s Square.

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