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France's ex-president Sarkozy calls for swift action in Syria


09:55, August 09, 2012

PARIS, Aug. 8 (Xinhua) -- Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy asked the international community to act rapidly to end conflicts in Syria, in his first appearance after his election defeat, local media reported on Wednesday.

In a joint statement, Sarkozy and head of the opposition Syrian National Council Abdulbaset Sieda stressed "... the need for rapid action by the international community to prevent the massacres (in Syria)", local broadcaster Europe 1 said.

According to the report, Sarkozy and Sieda held 40-minute phone conversation on the Syrian conflict, which had "great similarities with Libyan crisis" when Sarkozy pressed for a military intervention to stop month-long fighting between armed rebels and forces loyal to Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, who was killed in October 2011.

In a recent report, the daily Le Parisien reported Sarkozy's criticism of President Francois Hollande's inaction to end the Syrian political crisis.

"I was criticized on Libya, but at least, I acted. They must be firmer against the regime in Damascus, much firmer," he was quoted as saying by the newspaper.

On Wednesday, the Foreign Ministry said France is to chair a ministerial meeting of UN Security Council members at the end of August focusing on the humanitarian situation in Syria and in neighboring countries

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