France’s National Front (FN) party leader Marine Le Pen said she supported Russia’s position on the Syrian settlement and considered dialogue with Moscow on the issue essential.
“On Syria, I think that the diplomatic process must be accelerated, to find a political solution to the crisis with [Syrian President] Bashar al-Assad. On that I’m in complete disagreement with [French President] Francois Hollande who has no vision, apart from anything else… We must now take a decision to sit down with Russia, which has taken matters into its own hands,” Le Pen told the RT television channel in an interview released Friday.
The FN leader said she was “glad” that Russia has taken the Syrian issue “into its own hands,” but regretted that it was not France that did so.
Le Pen also called cooperation with the Gulf states, including Qatar and Saudi Arabia, “incoherent,” saying it bothered her,
“These relations must meet certain requirements. The requirement is a total break with financing of Islamic fundamentalists, at least that’s what I’d do with Saudi Arabia. As for Qatar, suspension of diplomatic relations with a country which at the least can be said behaves more than ambiguously when it comes to Islamic fundamentalism,” the French politician said.
Syria has been mired in civil war since 2011, with the army loyal to President Bashar Assad fighting several opposition factions and militant groups. The West, including France, and several Middle Eastern countries do not consider Assad to be the legitimate authority of Syria. Russia has repeatedly stressed that it is up to the Syrian people to decide on their leadership.
The latest round of intra-Syrian talks in Geneva took place on April 13-27. The Riyadh-formed Syrian opposition High Negotiations Committee (HNC) walked out of the talks over the continuous fighting in Syria and the lack of progress on humanitarian issues.