The State Department believes that the forum in Damascus does not create the conditions for refugees to return

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad should not dispose of international reconstruction funds, Washington said

The State Department believes that the forum in Damascus does not create the conditions for refugees to return
A migrant from Syria cries as she stands with her children on a field after crossing into Hungary from the border with Serbia near the village of Roszke, September 5, 2015. Austria and Germany threw open their borders to thousands of exhausted migrants on Saturday, bussed to the Hungarian border by a right-wing government that had tried to stop them but was overwhelmed by the sheer numbers reaching Europe’s frontiers. Left to walk the last yards into Austria, rain-soaked migrants, many of them refugees from Syria’s civil war, were whisked by train and shuttle bus to Vienna, where many said they were resolved to continue on to Germany. REUTERS/Marko Djurica

The US Department of State claims that the international conference on refugees held in Damascus does not create conditions for their safe return to Syria.

“The conference on refugees organized by the Assad regime and Russia was not a reliable attempt to create the necessary conditions for the safe and voluntary return of refugees to Syria”, –  the U.S. Department of State said in a statement issued Friday night. Although delegations from 26 countries attended the November 11-12 forum, Washington, D.C. said there was no support for the event “outside the narrow group of regime allies.”

Without providing any evidence, Washington said that the Syrian authorities, with the support of Russia, were “trying to use millions of vulnerable refugees” to falsely claim that the conflict in the Arab Republic was over. At the same time, the statement stressed that Assad should not dispose of international reconstruction funds.

“The US supports the return of refugees when conditions allow them to return safely and voluntarily”, –  the text says.

The International Conference on Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons in Damascus brought together delegations from 26 countries, including Russia, China, Iran, Lebanon, the Sultanate of Oman and Pakistan. The forum was also attended by representatives of the UN and 12 non-governmental organisations. As stated by Alexander Lavrentyev, Special Representative of the Russian President for the Syrian settlement, unilateral sanctions imposed against Syria hinder the reconstruction of the republic and the resolution of the refugee problem.

Moscow has repeatedly noted the politicization of refugees by Western countries.


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