MOSCOW (Sputnik) – According to Steinmeier, Russia launched its operation in Syria partially in order to challenge the provoking actions of the United States and Washington’s perception of Russia as just one of the regional powers. The German foreign minister said that it appears that Russia has reached its objective and that the world now perceives Russia as an important political and military player.
Steinmeier did say that military power alone will not ensure that Russia has enough partners and that political means need to be used in order to solidify Russia’s influential position on the international arena.
The latest nationwide Syrian ceasefire, excluding extremist groups, came into effect on December 30. Russia, Turkey and Iran serve as guarantors of the agreement.
Steinmeier told Sueddeutsche Zeitung that the joint Russia-Turkey efforts on Syria provide only temporary relief and that a permanent resolution of the conflict will need the involvement of other forces.
Steinmeier critiqued UN mediation efforts on Syria but predicted that Syria peace talks will in the end be conducted only under UN auspices.