NICOSIA (Sputnik) — Conflict situations in the Middle East must be resolved with the participation of all actors, without attempts to isolate anyone, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Thursday.
"Basically, we believe that the most difficult problems of the region of the Middle East and North Africa can be solved only on a joint basis, on an inclusive basis with the participation of all the so-called players without exception, without trying to isolate anyone," Lavrov told reporters after talks with his Cypriot counterpart.
The Middle East and Northern Africa have seen a number of major conflicts over the past decades. Russia has been maintaining dialogue with parties to conflicts and supporting peace process in many countries in the region suffering from military crises, such as Libya, Israel and Palestine. Apart from that, Russia, alongside Turkey and Iran, became the guarantor of the Syrian ceasefire regime introduced in late 2016 and backed by the resolution of the United Nations Security Council.
Afghanistan is in a state of political and social turmoil, with government forces fighting the continuing Taliban insurgency. The instability has persisted in the country since the 2001 US-led invasion to defeat the Taliban and al-Qaeda in the wake of the 9/11 attacks in the United States.
Libya has been in a state of turmoil since 2011, when a civil war broke out in the country and long-standing leader Muammar Gaddafi was overthrown, and the country was contested by two rival governments: the internationally-recognized Council of Deputies based in Tobruk and the Tripoli-based General National Congress.
In March 2011, several NATO states, including France, launched a military intervention in Libya aimed at ending all attacks against the civilians and establishing a ceasefire. Then-President of France Nicolas Sarkozy played an important part in promoting the EU sanctions against Gaddafi and urging for the intervention.
After the 2003 US invasion toppled Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein, the country has been engulfed in ongoing violence. Large ares of Iraq are currently controlled by the Daesh jihadist group, outlawed in Russia.