Germany: 'Solution to Syrian conflict is only imaginable without Assad' — Govt. Press Sec.

SOT, Maria Adebahr, Foreign Ministry spokesperson (German): «There have been 6 Russian vetoes with regards to chemical weapons, and 12 Russian vetoes in total regarding Syria in the last [few] months, and the Security Council is incapacitated and continues to be in the present case. This is a sad reality which we need to include in the whole discussion with regards to the independent investigation... Еще. Currently, the OPCW's [Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons] executive council in The Hague is the organisation which we and the Security Council wish to be able to carry out the investigation into the incidents. In the past they did it partially and under difficult conditions, and they found Assad responsible for using chemical weapons, and now there are experts on the scene. It is a matter of them gathering evidence and documenting the incidents, and we of course support this organisation in this important work which we currently still do not have a mandate for from the Security Council, because Russia delayed the extension of the independent investigation mechanism in November, and now we do not have such a mechanism any more.» German Federal Press Secretary Steffen Seibert outlined the German government's stance on the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria and possibilities of moving forward during a press conference in Berlin on Monday. Seibert declared that firstly, «truce resolution 2401, which is currently not being adhered to, must be implemented across the country» to be followed by «political process» including the participation of all those who have influence in the country and the region. Regarding Assad, Seibert was clear that «In our opinion, a long-term solution to the Syrian conflict is only imaginable without Assad.» Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Adebahr also commented on the current situation concerning the investigation of the alleged use of chemical weapons. She outlined her support for the OPCW's work, but was critical towards Russia and their use of vetoes in the Security Council.

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