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All elements present for worsening of regional Mideast crisis – French FM

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, who is heading shortly for talks in Moscow and Tehran, said Tuesday “all elements are present” for the worsening of a regional crisis around the Syrian conflict.

Speaking in parliament, Le Drian warned that failure to get progress in the political process was provoking various deteriorations on numerous levels linked with Syria.

“France believes it is indispensable that the (UN) Security Council must be able to get, as of now, a humanitarian truce that would avoid even heavier risks,” the Foreign Minister said.

He cited the ongoing fight against so-called Islamic State, against Al-Qaeda, which is still active in Syria and Iraq, as priorities for France. But he warned that the ongoing civil war in Syria, regime strikes against Eastern Ghouta and Idlib, the Turkish incursion in Afrin, Iranian incursions into Israeli air space, are all heating up the conflict.

“All the elements are there for a deterioration of the situation,” he told the French parliament, noting the situation has been “considerably degraded.” Le Drian cautioned that in his view “the worst is ahead of us and if there is no new element, we are going towards a humanitarian cataclysm.” He called for the resumption of the stalled Geneva Peace Process and a process of political transition in Syria, impartial elections and an inclusive process to integrate minorities in that country.

These proposals must be discussed with France’s partners and all parties in the region, Le Drian said, stressing he was travelling to Russia and Iran in the coming days at the request of President Emmanuel Macron.

Source: Kuwait News Agency

ANE