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Saudi, Egypt have ‘similar’ stance on Syria

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Saudi foreign minister says some progress made toward common position on Syria, and more consultations are needed. (File photo: AP)

Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Jubair said on Sunday both Cairo and Riyadh have a “similar” stance on Syria during his visit to Egypt, Al Arabiya News Channel reported.

In a joint press conference with his Egyptian counterpart, Jubair reiterated Saudi stance that there is “no place” for embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in a future and post-civil war Syria.

Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry said there were “no differences” between Riyadh and Cairo on Syria and emphasized that they both have a “similar” position.

Jubair’s statement comes after his comments on Thursday saying that Assad’s clinging to power is working as a “magnet” by allowing foreign militants to recruit more fighters, and he must go to rid Syria of ISIS.

Meanwhile, the foreign minister said international talks to find a solution to the conflict in Syria had yielded some progress but more consultations were required.

“I believe that there has been some progress and positions have moved closer on finding a solution to the Syrian crisis, but I cannot say that we have reached an agreement. We still need more consultations … to reach this point,” he told a news conference in Cairo after meeting his Egyptian counterpart.

Moscow says Assad must be part of any political transition and that the Syrian people will decide who rules them.

Washington has said it could tolerate Assad during a short transition period, but that he would then have to then exit the political stage.

In a flurry of diplomatic activity around the Syria crisis, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry visited Riyadh on Saturday and the two countries agreed to boost support for Syria’s moderate opposition while seeking a political resolution to the four-year-old conflict.