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» 06/19/2012
RUSSIA - USA
Bilateral US-Russian agreement, on Syria Putin brings home a victory
by Nina Achmatova
In his first face to face with Obama since returning to the Kremlin, the Russian President had the satisfaction of seeing Washington admit the need for a "political process" in Damascus, and not outside intervention. Spokesman: Putin intends to continue with the reset.

Moscow (AsiaNews) - A "war of attrition" in which Vladimir Putin, for the time being, looks like the winner. So say some Russian newspapers, such as the authoritative Kommersant, commenting on the relations between the U.S. and Russia in the aftermath of the first bilateral agreement between the U.S. president, Barack Obama, and the head of the Kremlin, back in the highest seat in Russia since May. The two met on June 18, on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Los Cabos, Mexico. The joint statement, coming out of the face to face after weeks of friction between the two chancelleries, reflects Moscow's intention to continue the policy of "resetting" (begun by Dmitri Medvedev in 2008) and Washington's willingness to not force the partners, aware that it would be a counter-productive choice with the new Russian president. Despite the tough trading of accusations in recent days on the mutual responsibilities in the violence in Syria and the tensions regarding the anti-missile shield in Eastern Europe, the parties have decided to avoid further critical statements and highlight the points in common.

Putin intends to give continuity to the positive process in relations with the United States, his spokesman Dmtri Peskov made known from Mexico. The two presidents addressed the burning issues which they see from different positions: first of all, that of the Syrian crisis, but within the context of "a very constructive and open dialogue," Peskov said. And it is precisely concerning Syria, the Russian newspapers noted, that Obama made concessions to Moscow, giving Putin a "trophy" to take home. In the joint statement, the two launched an appeal for an end to the violence and they admitted the existence of "many points in common" on the issue. Abandoning a more interventionist line, Washington recognized the need for a "political process" to prevent civil war. "We are united in the belief that the Syrian people should have the opportunity to choose their own future in a democratic and independent manner," the statement said. The Kremlin has always refused to support new measures against the regime in Damascus at the Security Council, fearing that, as in Libya, they might actually cover an external armed intervention and the overthrow of a friendly regime.

Also on the anti-missile shield - which the U.S. would like to install in Europe, and which Moscow opposes - conciliatory tones were used after those of the Cold War, which led Putin to boycott the G8 summit in Camp David. The two leaders expressed a willingness to find a compromise to overcome their differences. The entire meeting recalled the atmosphere of times when Obama met with the 'liberal' Medvedev. At the end, the head of the Kremlin invited his colleague to visit Moscow, where he hasn't been for three years.

No mention of the so-called "Magnitsky list", a list of some Russian officials banned from the U.S., because they are linked to serious human rights violations, and concerning whose approval the U.S. Senate will soon make a decision. Moscow has already threatened retaliatory measures, but after the meeting in Los Cabos, the U.S. initiative might not go ahead.

 

 

 

 


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See also
01/02/2012 SYRIA
Syria: Arab Parliament calls for the immediate withdrawal of observers
08/29/2008 RUSSIA - GEORGIA
Russia isolated; Putin accuses U.S. of preparing conflict in Georgia
08/30/2011 SYRIA
Melkite Patriarch of Damascus calls for urgent dialogue between government and youth
by JPG
03/05/2015 SYRIA
Aleppo, Syrian rebels attack the Damascus intelligence headquarters: dozens dead
03/15/2012 SYRIA
Christians in a divided country, after a year of revolt
by Nabil Hourani*

Editor's choices
ASIA
Vigil for persecuted Christians, our teachers in the mission in the West
by Bernardo CervelleraThe "wall of indifference and cynicism" and the silence and apathy so often denounced by Pope Francis have become almost a fortress. Such persecution reflects confessional manipulation, which slams Islam as such, and ideological manipulation, which forgets what is happening in North Korea or China. An increasingly post-Christian Europe seems disinterested in Christians.
RUSSIA – CHINA
Moscow Patriarchate: China authorises the ordination of Chinese Orthodox priests on its territory
by Marta AllevatoMetropolitan Hilarion, the Moscow Patriarchate’s ‘foreign minister’, made the announcement after a visit to China where he met the leaders of the State Administration for Religious Affairs. The first priest should serve in Harbin. Two more ordinations are expected. With a new Cold War as the background, the Moscow-Beijing strategic alliance also has a Church connection with the People's Republic recognising the latter’s 'political' role in Russia.
VATICAN
Pope: We and the four new saints, witnesses of the Resurrection "where forgetfulness of God and human disorientation are most evident "Francis proclaims four religious sisters saints: one French, one Italian, two Palestinians: Maria Alfonsina Danil Ghattas, the foundress of the Sisters of the Rosary, and the Carmelite Maria of Crucified Jesus (nee Maria Bawardy). Mahmoud Abbas, President of the Palestinian Authority present. "Abiding in Christ" and cultivating “unity among us" are essential signs of witness. Maria Bawardy, "instrument of encounter and communion with the Muslim world".

Dossier

by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
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