Outgoing German Foreign Minister Accuses West of ‘Incompetence’ over Syrian Crisis

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According to outgoing German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, the Syrian war is a “chronicle of missed opportunities and proofs of incompetence of the Western allies.”

Outgoing German Foreign Minister Accuses West of ‘Incompetence’ over Syrian Crisis

Outgoing German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier during a press conference in Berlin on May 31, 2016 (Photo: AFP 2017 / John MacDougall)

Outgoing German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier expressed doubts about correctness of the West’s strategy in the Syrian conflict, the Süddeutsche Zeitung newspaper reported.

“The history of this war is a chronicle of missed opportunities and proofs of incompetence of the Western allies,” Steinmeier told the newspaper.

The outgoing German Foreign Minister noted that despite the lack of personal sympathy for the Syrian government, he always considered that it is necessary to seek a possibility of cooperation between Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and the West.

However, as Steinmeier pointed out, Washington and Paris replied to all his initiatives with sharp criticism, turning Syria into an “imaginary axis of evil.” If the West assessed the situation more realistically and did not require an immediate overthrow of Assad, even the first meetings on the conflict settlement would lead to a progress, Steinmeier concluded.

On Friday, German President Joachim Gauck released Steinmeier from his position as Foreign Minister and handed over his powers to Chairman of the Social Democratic Party, ex-Minister of Economy, Sigmar Gabriel.

Frank-Walter Steinmeier headed the German Foreign Ministry since 2013 and left his post in connection with participation in the presidential elections in Germany. Late last year, the ruling coalition of the Merkel‘s CDU/CSU bloc and the Social Democrats slated him for the Presidency, when acting head of the state Gauck refused to be re-elected due to his age. The federal presidential election in Germany is scheduled for 12 February.

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  • Peter Jennings

    It’s far more than incompetence, it’s treason. Punting lies to start foreign wars which puts all citizens at risk and in which only the suppliers benefit from is treason.

  • Rodger

    Nice job of not agreeing with policy and going along with it anyway you hypocrite.Germany can be proud of you.