- Title: Damascus wants Trump to end rebel support - Syria FM
- Date: 20th November 2016
- Summary: DAMASCUS, SYRIA (NOVEMBER 20, 2016) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF SYRIAN FOREIGN MINISTER, WALID AL-MUALLEM, ARRIVING FOR NEWS CONFERENCE VARIOUS OF MUALLEM SEATED (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) SYRIAN FOREIGN MINISTER, WALID AL-MUALLEM, SAYING: "It is too soon to judge what policy U.S. President-elect Donald Trump will have on Syria's civil war, and a wise man has to correct the mistakes of the previous administration. What we want from the new administration is not just to stop support [for armed groups] but to curb those regional powers that are supporting those groups. We have to wait." VARIOUS OF NEWS CONFERENCE IN PROGRESS (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) SYRIAN FOREIGN MINISTER, WALID AL-MUALLEM, SAYING: "He [U.N. special envoy to Syria, Staffan De Mistura, spoke about autonomous administration for the rebels' eastern Aleppo. We told him this was completely rejected. This is a violation of our sovereignty." VARIOUS OF MUALLEM LEAVING
- Embargoed: 5th December 2016 13:54
- Keywords: Syrian foreign minister Al-Muallem Middle East U.S. war conflict Trump rebels
- Location: DAMASCUS, SYRIA
- City: DAMASCUS, SYRIA
- Country: Syria
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace,Military Conflicts
- Reuters ID: LVA0015990DAF
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: It is too soon to judge what policy United States President-elect Donald Trump will have on Syria's civil war, but Damascus hopes he will end support for armed groups and curb regional powers who back them, Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem said on Sunday (November 20).
"What we want from the new administration is not just to stop support [for armed groups] but to curb those regional powers that are supporting those groups. We have to wait," Muallem told a news conference the Syrian capital.
He added that the special envoy of the United Nations secretary-general, Staffan De Mistura, had proposed for rebel-held east Aleppo to have an autonomous administration.
"We told him this was completely rejected. This is a violation of our sovereignty," said Muallem.
An elected city council there oversees services and De Mistura said that while he recognized the government's need to maintain sovereignty, Aleppo should be treated as a special case.
Muallem said that the arrangement was intended by rebel groups to control distribution of food and that they were holding the civilians of eastern Aleppo hostage.
Hundreds of people have been killed since Tuesday (November 15) as the government and its allies attempt to quash resistance in Aleppo's rebel-held eastern zone.
Syria's military and Russia's air force had paused their bombardment of eastern Aleppo, except for on the frontlines, for two weeks after a month-long offensive from late September to late October, but recommenced strikes on Tuesday.
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