Syria’s President arrives in London on landmark visit; Report: Blair to ask him convey message to Saddam
Syria’s President Bashar Al-Assad and his wife arrived in London Sunday evening for an official visit to the United Kingdom.
President al-Assad and his wife were greeted at Heathrow airport by Queen Elizabeth II representative, Baron Trembington and British Member of Parliament and State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mike O’brien, the UK ambassador to Damascus, the Syrian ambassador to London, the Syrian Embassy staff as well as Arab ambassadors accredited to London, according to the official Syrian Arab News Agency.
Following the reception ceremony, the Syrian leader, his wife and accompanying delegation left for their residence at Dorchester Hotel of London.
On Monday, the Syrian leader is set to hold talks with British Prime Minister Tony Blair and will also meet with Queen of England Elizabeth II and Crown Prince Charles on Tuesday, according to reports.
According to the Telegraph, Blair is to ask al-Assad to pass an eleventh-hour message to Saddam Hussein telling him that Iraq can still avoid a war if it gives up its weapons of mass destruction.
On Wednesday, the Syrian President will hold a meeting with opposition leaders. The Syrian leader’s talks will center on the Iraqi issue, a possible US attack against Baghdad and the conflict with Israel.
President al-Assad is accompanied by an official delegation, which includes Foreign Minister Farouk Al-Shara, Minister of Economy and Foreign Trade, Dr. Ghassan Al-Rifai and Minister of Communications, Dr. Mohammed Bashir Al-Munajed. (Albawaba.com)