Doha / Information Office / March 04
The State of Qatar and the Russian Federation affirmed today their intention to strengthen their relations in various fields and to enhance joint cooperation, especially in economic and trade fields.
Doha and Moscow stressed their concord on several regional and global issues, particularly with regard to the need for dialogue to resolve any existing crisis through political and diplomatic endeavors.
HE Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani said in a joint press conference with HE Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Minister Sergey Lavrov that he had held constructive discussions with the Russian minister on all regional and international issues, and that there was a common vision for resolving crises through peaceful means and dialogue.
HE added that the talks with the Russian side dealt with the exchange of views on the developments achieved, whether in the political solution or on the ground with regard to the Syrian crisis, where it was stressed the position of the State of Qatar supporting that the political solution agreed upon by the Syrian people is the only solution to end the Syrian crisis.
HE Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani said that the discussions also touched on Libya and the necessity of establishing security and that there should be one government and one army, pointing out that the Qatari and Russian sides agreed to support Skhirat agreement and its outputs and the State of Qatar's support to the Government of National Accord resulting from this agreement.
HE also said that the two sides exchanged views on the Palestinian issue and the peace process, and joint efforts to end the division between Palestinians, stressing the importance of ending this division and seeking reconciliation among all the Palestinian parties.
On the latest developments of the Gulf crisis, HE Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs said that there are no new moves regarding the crisis except those exerted by HH Amir of the sisterly State of Kuwait, Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah, as part of the efforts to hold a dialogue, along with the efforts of the United States seeking to end the crisis.
HE stressed that there are no practical steps in the crisis or any changes that prove that there has been a change in the approach and behavior of the blockading countries since the beginning of the crisis, as the speech and the methodology followed are still the same since the beginning of the crisis.
HE said that the State of Qatar reiterates the position it has declared from the beginning and is ready for dialogue if the blockading countries are ready to enter into a positive rational and constructive dialogue. HE pointed out that the continuation of the same methodology and policy are not indicative of any solution.
HE pointed out that the talks with the Russian minister dealt with the Gulf crisis and its repercussions on the issues of regional security in the region, and how these repercussions began to reach other issues of concern to us and the Middle East.
In response to a question on Qatar's reservations about Syria's return to the Arab League, HE said that the reasons behind the suspension of Syria's membership in the Arab League still exist, and there was nothing new to change this decision, and we are committed to a political solution in Syria accepted by the Syrian people so that Syria's seat will be for a political leadership representing the Syrian people.
As for what has been discussed about Qatar's efforts to conclude a military deal with Russia to buy the Russian missile defense system (S400) and the opposition of some countries such as Saudi Arabia for this deal, HE said that such deals are a sovereign decision of the State of Qatar and no Saudi Arabia or any other country are concerned with such issue.
HE pointed out that there are discussions with Russia for acquiring different military equipment and there is no agreement currently for the defense systems (S400) , noting that there is a technical committee which is studying the options available that can benefit both parties from any agreement reached, and that the Qatari technical team examines the needs of Qatar of military equipment from Russia, on the basis of an agreement between both parties in this regard.
Concerning the talks between Taliban and the United States in Doha, HE said that we have to be optimistic about these talks because of our desire to achieve peace in Afghanistan, stressing that peace will not come by force, but by dialogue and understanding.
For his part, HE Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Minister Sergey Lavrov said that his meeting with HE Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs discussed the situation in Syria and Libya, where both sides stressed the need to calm the situation according to international resolutions and laws.
"We also discussed the Palestinian issue and the peace process, where we agreed on the need to resolve it as per international consensus, as well as our discussion of the Gulf crisis and the need for calm, taking the Russian initiative on common security in the region."
The Russian Foreign Minister hailed the depth relations between Qatar and his country, stressing the importance of the relationship between the Qatar Investment Authority and the Russian Fund for Investment in the oil and gas sector, stressing the keenness of the Russian private sector to invest in this field, given Qatar's readiness to host the World Cup 2022, and the role of Russian expertise in organizing such massive sports events and their willingness to participate in these events.
In response to a question about the expected visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin to the State of Qatar, HE Sergei Lavrov said that President Putin has responded to the invitation to visit the State of Qatar within the framework of a Gulf tour, noting that the timing of the visit will be determined later.
On the cooperation between the two sides in the technical and military field , HE the Russian Foreign Minister said that an agreement had been signed between the two sides for nearly a year and a half, stressing the parties' adherence to this agreement, and "in the event of the State of Qatar to apply for a defense system, the matter will be studied in accordance with this agreement."
On the formation of a new working committee to find a solution to the Syrian crisis, HE Sergey Lavrov pointed out that there are a number of mechanisms such as the International Support Group for Syria and the United Nations Humanitarian Aid Group, adding that many international efforts are being made in this regard, and that there is no need for a new mechanism.
On the visit of the Israeli Prime Minister to Moscow, HE Sergei Lavrov said that the visit discussed the Middle East peace process. "President Putin emphasized the Russian position to overcome the obstacles to a settlement," he said.
He also referred to Russia's invitation to the parties to a dialogue hosted by Moscow without conditions, and "Netanyahu and President Mahmoud Abbas agreed in principle to the proposal and is now before them," noting that Russia believes that there will be no progress in the peace process without dialogue.
On the situation in Afghanistan, Lavrov said that Russia is following the situation there and is making an effort to launch a process of political reconciliation in this country. "We have been accused of having connection with the Taliban, and now there is a Russian-US connection on this issue and there is no need for international competition. We are neighbors with Afghanistan and a peaceful solution to the crisis must be reached."
With regard to the Venezuelan crisis, HE the Russian Foreign Minister stressed the support of his country to the Venezuelan people, calling on the United States to stop the policy of threat and commitment to the sovereignty and stability of States in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations.