Joint Statement of the Abu Dhabi Meeting on Syria, 13 May 2013, Abu Dhabi

The Foreign Ministers of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, the State of Qatar, the Republic of Turkey, the United Arab Emirates with the participation of the Foreign Minister of Arab Republic of Egypt came together in Abu Dhabi on 13 May 2013 to discuss the ongoing situation in Syria from a regional perspective. 

The Ministers expressed their continuing strong concern at the events in Syria, and the increasing potential for a destabilization of the wider region.  The Ministers reiterated the regime’s responsibility for the continuing violence in Syria that has so far cost the lives of more than 80,000 Syrians and caused untold human suffering.

The Ministers expressed their strong condemnation of the bombings in Reyhanli, Turkey on 11 May 2013. They expressed their solidarity with Turkey and conveyed their condolences for the victims and their families. The Turkish Foreign Minister briefed the ministers about the initial findings regarding the attack. The ministers warned against the dangers of a regional expansion of the conflict as a result of such attacks. 

In building on the core group Ministerial meeting in Istanbul on 20 April 2013, the Ministers   reaffirmed their conviction that it is a political solution that will end the bloody conflict in Syria. Regrettably it is the Syrian regime of President Assad that has prevented this. The Ministers cited the Geneva communique of 30 June 2012 as the appropriate basis for the attainment of this solution  if the legitimate aspiration of the Syrian people are met, and on the understanding that President Assad, his Regime, and his associates with blood on their hands have no place in the future of Syria.

The ministers took note of the recent call by the Russian Federation and the United States for a meeting to discuss the full implementation of the Geneva Communiqué, and its stipulation to establish a transitional governing body in Syria with full executive authority.

The ministers reiterated their support for the Syrian Military Council and acknowledged its central role in bringing progressive and positive changes on the ground.

The Ministers further reiterated their support to the Syrian National Coalition of Revolutionary and Opposition Forces, as the sole legitimate representative of the Syrian people, and they welcomed the expansion of the coalition for a united and stronger front that reflects the diversity of Syrian society.

The Ministers emphasized the responsibility of the Syrian regime for the desperate humanitarian situation both within Syria and amongst almost 1.5 million refugees in neighboring countries, underscoring their plight as a direct consequence of the regime’s ongoing tactics of targeting civilians and the systematic denial of access to international humanitarian assistance. The ministers reemphasized the principles of burden sharing by the international community in addressing the dire humanitarian situation in the neighboring countries.

The Ministers viewed with extreme concern reports and strong indications of chemical weapons usage in Syria by regime forces. The ministers urged the international community to take all necessary measures to prevent the use of such weapons. They emphasized the importance that the UN is enabled to conduct a comprehensive investigation of these serious crimes.

Finally, the Ministers agreed to maintain continued cooperation and coordination among themselves and with the international partners, and to maintain solidarity with the Syrian people.

                                                                                                      13 May 2013, Abu Dhabi