Vienna, 14 September 2013 Press release

Spindelegger: "Flicker of hope for some momentum in matters of Syria in the UN Security Council"

Vice-Chancellor on the agreement between Kerry and Lavrov on Syria

Vienna, 14 September 2013 – "The agreement reached between US Secretary of State John Kerry and the Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on the matter of Syria's chemical weapons is an encouraging first step that soon needs to be followed by further action", Vice-Chancellor and Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger said in his first reaction to the compromise entered between the USA and Russia on further steps of controlling and destroying the chemical weapons in Syria.

"The international community and the UN Security Council must now make sure once and for all that it will never again be possible to use these cruel weapons. There is a significant deficit of trust vis-à-vis the regime in Syria. The regime must now scrupulously stick to its promises and grant full access to all places and facilities where chemical weapons are produced and stored so that they can be secured and destroyed", Spindelegger continued.

The Austrian Vice-Chancellor confirmed that the first accord between the USA and Russia on a joint mode of action in Syria is a flicker of hope: "What is now required is to overcome the year-long blockade on the UN Security Council and vigorously resume the efforts to bring about a political process. We all know that the problem of Syria cannot be solved by military means and that political negotiations alone can bring about a long-term solution. The breakthrough achieved in Geneva illustrates that results are possible when the political will required is shown and when pressure is exerted from the outside."

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