President of Russia Vladimir Putin: I am very glad to see you Mr President.
I must say that since your last visit to Russia our bilateral relations have grown considerably. We are satisfied to see that virtually all the agreements we reached during your previous visit are being implemented.
Unfortunately, the situation in the region remains very tense. We see that in the region one conflict is more or less developing into another. Of course this worries us. Syria always has played, plays and, I am confident, will continue to play a very important role in determining developments in the region.
I am grateful that you found the time to come to Moscow and accepted our invitation. We will have the opportunity to talk about the whole range of our bilateral relations and the situation in the region.
President of Syria Bashar Assad: Your Excellency, I would like to express how happy I am to have the opportunity to visit your country, to visit Russia. I consider that this visit will help us reinforce the results of my previous one and ensure that they translate into real affairs and projects.
In recent times our cooperation has become much stronger. And one of the goals of my visit today consists in expanding this cooperation, especially considering that your international role has considerably increased over the past few years.
As you know, Syria is now playing a more effective role. We have many economic, political and other issues in which we are presently cooperating. And we are contributing to maintaining stability using all the resources at our disposition. Are we are going to encourage others to do so as well.
I would like to thank you once again for finding time for this visit at this very sensitive moment.
Vladimir Putin: Mr President, you know that I had the opportunity to exchange opinions with the Israeli Prime Minister who was recently in Moscow, with the head of the Lebanese government, and with other colleagues both from the region and from other countries. We are continuing to participate as actively as possible in the process of finding a Middle Eastern peace settlement, while remaining in permanent contact with all the political forces in Palestine. With regards to the dramatic developments in the Palestinian territories in the last few days, I would be very interested and find it very useful to hear your opinion on the situation’s prospects. And of course we will talk about Iraq. The situation in Iraq is not improving. But we must do everything we can to help it improve, and do so all together, independently of our different approaches to the beginning and development of events. We must do everything possible to improve the situation in Iraq and do so for the well-being of the Iraqi nation.
We have a huge number of issues that we can and should discuss today. In connection with this I would like to once again welcome you to Moscow.