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    Syrian President Bashar al-Assad meets with Russian parliamentary delegation in Damascus

    Russian Lawmaker Gifts Assad History Schoolbook With Palmyra on Cover

    © Sputnik / Mikhail Voskresenskiy
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    Member of the Russian State Duma Alexander Yushchenko presented Syrian President Bashar Assad with a Russian fifth grade history textbook , the cover of which depicts monuments of the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra.

    “During a meeting today I presented with a fifth grade history textbook from 1983, the cover of which depicts Palmyra,” the deputy told reporters after talks with the Syrian president.

    According to RIA Novosti, Yushchenko studied from the same book when he was in school.

    'Bashar Assad was gifted that same history book with an image of Palmyra on the cover'

    The ancient city of Palmyra is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was captured by Daesh terrorists in May 2015. As a result, a number of cultural sites were destroyed, including the National Museum, which was completely looted by the terrorists.

    On March 27, 2016, the Syrian military announced the return of control over Palmyra. In this operation, Russia provided Syria with air support. Now Russian experts are helping to demine the city.

    Yushchenko who is a member of the Russian Communist Party also presented the Syrian President with a commemorative medal from his party in honor of the 55th anniversary of Gagarin's flight into space, as well as a “Pravda” newspaper from April 13, 1961, which reports the mission.

    The delegation of Russian parliamentarians met with Assad on April 12, Cosmonautics Day.

    Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, right, meets with Russian parliamentary delegation in Damascus
    © Sputnik / Mikhail Voskresenskiy
    Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, right, meets with Russian parliamentary delegation in Damascus

    Yushchenko also spoke about Bashar al-Assad’s position on Syria and the issue of country’s federalization.

    “During the talks in Geneva, there is a struggle for the future of Syria, Bashar Assad told us during a meeting. In his opinion, the federalization of Syria will destroy it,” Yushchenko said.

    Assad stressed that this opinion is also shared by the Syrian people. Yushchenko added that the Syrian president also noted that a ‘parliamentary republic will not work.’

    “Bashar al-Assad said that there is a need for law in a secular state. The constitution should protect all layers of the population, rather than majority or a minority,” the deputy said.

    Earlier, Assad stated that Russian companies in Syria will enjoy maximum preference especially in the construction, oil and gas sectors.


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