Russia: Heavily armed foes would not beat Syria army

By REUTERS
April 4, 2012 13:27

MOSCOW - Russia warned Western and Arab nations on Wednesday against arming Syrian President Bashar Assad's foes, saying it would lead to years of bloodshed and would not enable the opposition to defeat government forces.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said the "Friends of Syria" group of Western and Arab nations is undermining international envoy Kofi Annan's efforts to end more than a year of violence, and criticized countries that support arming the opposition.

"It is clear as day that even if the opposition is armed to the teeth, it will not defeat the Syrian army, and there will simply be slaughter and mutual destruction for long, long years," Interfax news agency quoted Lavrov as saying.

"Everyone has supported Kofi Annan's plan but decisions at the 'Friends of Syria' group meeting aimed at arming the opposition and at new sanctions undermine peace efforts," Itar-Tass quoted Lavrov as saying during a visit to Azerbaijan.


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