Syria Foreign Minister arrives in Saudi Arabia for first visit since 2011 – Middle East Monitor

Syrian Foreign Minister, Faisal Mekdad, arrived in Jeddah on Wednesday, for the first visit to Saudi Arabia since 2011, Anadolu News Agency reports.

A statement by the Saudi Foreign Ministry said Mekdad’s visit came upon an invitation from Saudi Foreign Minister, Prince Faisal bin Farhan “for talks on efforts to reach a political solution to the Syrian crisis that preserves Syria’s unity, security and stability”.

The talks will also tackle means of facilitating the return of Syrian refugees to their homeland, and securing humanitarian aid to the affected areas in Syria, it added.

Mekdad’s visit to the oil-rich Kingdom is the first official meeting between the two countries since the outbreak of the Syrian conflict in 2011.

Saudi Arabia withdrew its ambassador from Damascus in 2011 and severed its diplomatic ties with the Bashar Al-Assad regime, following its deadly crackdown on pro-democracy protests.

The Syrian regime, however, began to exchange official visits and contacts with several Arab countries in recent years, amid reports about a possible resumption of Syria’s membership in the Cairo-based Arab League.

READ: GCC holds consultative meeting to discuss Syria return to Arab League

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