Joint Statement by the Representatives of Iran, Russia and Türkiye on the 19th International Meeting on Syria in the Astana Format.
The representatives of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Russian Federation and the Republic of Türkiye as guarantors of the Astana format:
- Guided by the agreements reached by the Tripartite Summit of the guarantor countries of the Astana Process on 19 July 2022 in Tehran, examined the latest international and regional developments and emphasized the leading role of the Astana Process in the peaceful settlement of the Syrian crisis;
- Reaffirmed their unwavering commitment to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of the Syrian Arab Republic as well as to the purposes and principles of the UN Charter and highlighted that these principles should be universally respected and complied with;
- Expressed their determination to continue working together to combat terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and stand against separatist agendas aimed at undermining the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Syria as well as threatening the national security of neighboring countries including through cross-border attacks and infiltrations. Condemned increased presence and activities of terrorist groups and their affiliates under different names in various parts of Syria, including the attacks targeting civilian facilities and IDP camps which result in loss of innocent lives. Highlighted the necessity to fully implement all arrangements related to the north of Syria;
- Reviewed in detail the situation in Idlib de-escalation area. Agreed to make further efforts to ensure sustainable normalization of the situation there and improve the humanitarian situation in and around the area. Highlighted the necessity to maintain calm on the ground by fully implementing all agreements on Idlib;
- Discussed the situation in north east of Syria and agreed that constant security and stability in this region can only be achieved on the basis of preservation of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country. Rejected all attempts to create new realities on the ground, including illegitimate self-rule initiatives under the pretext of combating terrorism. Reaffirmed their determination to stand against separatist agendas in the east of the Euphrates aimed at undermining the unity of Syria as well as threatening the national security of neighboring countries, including through cross-border attacks and infiltrations.
Expressed grave concern, in this regard, with increasing hostilities and all forms of oppression by the separatist groups against civilians in east of the Euphrates, including through suppression of peaceful demonstrations, forced conscription, and discriminatory practices in the field of education.
Reiterated their opposition to the illegal seizure and transfer of oil revenues that should belong to Syria. Condemned the actions of countries that support terrorist entities including illegitimate self-rule initiatives in the north-east of Syria;
- Condemned the continuing Israeli military attacks in Syria including on civilian infrastructures. Considered it as violating the international law, international humanitarian law, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Syria, and recognized it as destabilizing and intensifying the tension in the region. Reaffirmed the necessity to abide by universally recognized international legal decisions, including those provisions of the relevant UN resolutions rejecting the occupation of Syrian Golan, first and foremost UN Security Council Resolutions 242 and 497 which also consider all decisions and measures taken by Israel in this regard null and void and have no legal effect;
- Expressed their conviction that there could be no military solution to the Syrian conflict and reaffirmed their commitment to advance viable and lasting Syrian-led and Syrian-owned, UN-facilitated political process in line with the UN Security Council Resolution 2254;
- Emphasized the important role of the Constitutional Committee, created as a result of the decisive contribution of the Astana guarantors and in furtherance of the decisions of the Syrian National Dialogue Congress in Sochi; in promoting the political settlement of the Syrian conflict;
- Called for holding 9th round of the Drafting Commission of the Syrian Constitutional Committee as soon as possible with a constructive approach by the Syrian parties. In this regard, reaffirmed their determination to support the Committee's work through continuous interaction with the Syrian parties to the Constitutional Committee and the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Syria Geir O. Pedersen, as facilitator, in order to ensure its sustainable and effective functioning.
Underlined the necessity that the Constitutional Committee should conduct its activities without any bureaucratic and logistical hindrances;
- Expressed the conviction that the Committee in its work should respect the Terms of Reference and Core Rules of Procedure to enable the Committee to implement its mandate of preparing and drafting for popular approval a constitutional reform as well as achieving progress in its work and be governed by a sense of compromise and constructive engagement without foreign interference and externally imposed timelines aimed at reaching general agreement of its members;
- Reiterated grave concern at the humanitarian situation in Syria. Rejected all unilateral sanctions, which are in contravention of international law, international humanitarian law and the UN Charter, including, among other things, any discriminatory measures through waivers for certain regions which could lead to this country’s disintegration by assisting separatist agendas;
- Emphasized the need to eliminate the impediments and to increase humanitarian assistance to all Syrians throughout the country without discrimination, politicization and preconditions;
- In order to support the improvement of the humanitarian situation in Syria and the progress in the process of the political settlement, called upon the international community, the United Nations and its humanitarian agencies, to enhance their assistance to whole of Syria through early recovery and resilience projects including the restoration of basic infrastructure assets – water, electricity, sanitation, health, education, schools and hospitals as well as the humanitarian mine action in accordance with the international humanitarian law;
- Highlighted the need to facilitate safe, dignified and voluntary return of refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) to their original places of residence in Syria in compliance with international humanitarian law, ensuring their right to return and right to be supported. In this regard, called upon the international community to provide the necessary assistance to Syrian refugees and IDPs and reaffirmed their readiness to continue interaction with all relevant parties, including the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and other specialized international agencies;
- Reiterated their determination to continue operations on mutual release of detainees/abductees within the framework of the respective Working Group of the Astana format. Underscored that the Working Group is a unique mechanism that has proven to be effective and necessary for building confidence between the Syrian parties, and decided to further continue its work on the release of detainees and abductees and expand its operations in line with its mandate on the handover of bodies and identification of missing persons;
- In addition to the Syrian issue, they confirmed their intention to strengthen trilateral coordination in different fields in order to promote joint political and economic cooperation;
- Took note with appreciation the participation of delegations of Jordan, Iraq and Lebanon as observers of the Astana format as well as representatives of the United Nations and the ICRC;
- Congratulating Kazakhstan on holding successfully the Presidential election on November 20 2022, expressed their sincere gratitude to the Kazakh authorities for hosting in Astana the 19th International Meeting on Syria in the Astana format;
- Decided to convene the 20th International Meeting on Syria in the Astana format in Astana in the first half of 2023. Noted the decision in the Joint Statement of the Tripartite Summit on 19 July 2022 to hold the next Summit in the Russian Federation.