Thursday, August 29, 2013
Europa & Palestine News « Europa & Middle East News
Syria was the major subject of an extensive discussion between politicians during the visit to Austria of United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, which takes place between 28 and 31 August 2013.
After a work meeting with the Secretary General Ki-Moon and President Heinz Fischer, which was held at the office of the President, Chancellor Werner Faymann stated: “The Austrian Government has agreed that a military strike on Syria is not a contribution to good policy development. Therefore Austria will stay as a neutral country with its voice for a peaceful as the only solution for the conflict”.
He added: “It’s a race against time, and we hope that in view of the potentially devastating consequences of a military strike, this position will gain the upper hand for a political solution”.
Secretary General Ki-Moon stated: “We had a very useful exchange of views with the President and the Chancellor on how to address the situation in Syria. We are of the opinion that thesituation should be resolved in a peaceful way through dialogue. At the same time, and while the United Nations investigation team is now on the ground they should be allowed to conclude their investigation activities, and I am going to receive their report as soon as possible. I am thus now cutting short my visit to Austria, unfortunately, and I appreciate President Heinz Fischer’s very kind understanding of (this) inevitable situation, and that I will not be able to participate in the Alpbach Forum together with the President”.
The Secretary General continued: “And we also discussed the situation in the Middle East, particularly the Golan Heights. The President explained, together with the Chancellor, his security concerns in the Golan Heights, and I really appreciated such a long-standing dedicated contribution by Austrian troops in the Golan Heights and I expect that when the situation becomes normal, that we would expect the resumption of Austrian peacekeeping contributions in the Golan Heights. And I really appreciated the contribution in UNIFIL and also UNTSO. And I am very much grateful for Austrian Government’s contribution. Thank you very much”.