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  • » 02/14/2017, 10.27

    UNITED NATIONS - SYRIA

    Geneva, UN peace talks on Syria postponed to February 23



    The United Nations Special Envoy confirms that "the letters" of official invitation have been sent and delegations "will arrive around February 20". Behind the further delay the need to provide more time to the opposition to prepare for meetings. Tomorrow in Astana a new meeting between emissaries of Assad and rebel leaders.

     

    Geneva (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The beginning of the UN peace talks on Syria, scheduled at first on 20 February in Geneva (Switzerland), is now fixed for the 23 of the month.

    Officials speaking on behalf of United Nations Special Envoy Staffan de Misturareported yesterday that the official invitation letters have been sent and "delegations will arrive around February 20".  In a note Yara Sharif, a spokesman for de Mistura, said that "the formal start of negotiations is scheduled for February 23". 

    Late last month, during a public meeting in New York, the UN special envoy to Syria had already announced a first delay of the talks, the beginning of which was scheduled for February 8. Behind the postponement, the need to ensure Syrian opposition more time to prepare for the meetings in Geneva.

    On February 12, the main movement opposed to President Bashar al-Assad announced the 21 names of the delegation, invited to sit at the negotiating table with the representatives of the Syrian government and the UN mediators.

    In the past "indirect" talks between the two sides were held in the Swiss city. These meetings produced general statements of intent and the announcements of cease-fire, in reality were never been observed in the field.

    Meanwhile, international diplomacy is moving on several fronts: Russia and Iran, close to the government of Damascus, and Turkey, allied to the rebels, have promoted a new round of talks between envoys of Assad and leaders of armed groups in Astana, the capital of Kazakhstan, for February15 and 16. Last month, for the first time since the war began in 2011, Moscow, Tehran and Ankara were able to gather the leaders of the two fronts around a table.

    However, so far there has not been a real breakthrough to determine a future path of peace and normalization in the country.

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    See also

    11/01/2017 18:31:00 KAZAKHSTAN – SYRIA
    As Astana gets ready for Syria peace conference, opposition remains divided

    Kazakhstan’s role will be limited to hosting the meeting. This means that Russia, Iran and Turkey will play the main role in solving the regional crisis. Erdogan reiterates partnership with Moscow. Only Syrian opposition groups sponsored by Ankara will be at the meeting. Other groups have been blocked.



    17/01/2014 SYRIA
    As Damascus agrees to a prisoner exchange, rebels in Istanbul . . .
    If a swap were agreed upon, it would be the first exchange of prisoners of war in three years. The opposition meets in Turkey to decide on participation in Geneva II. Strong divisions exist between secularists and Islamists as well as between pro-Saudi and pro-Qatar factions. US Secretary makes a plea.

    21/01/2014 IRAN - UN - SYRIA
    United Nations takes Iran off list for Geneva II. Tehran protests against US interference
    For the UN, the Islamic Republic has not subscribed to the points outlined by the 2012 Peace Conference. The invitation to the meeting to be held tomorrow in Geneva had been submitted by the UN Secretary General on 19 November. The Syrian National Council leaves opposition bloc and will not participate in the talks.

    31/01/2014 UNITED NATIONS - SYRIA
    Lakhdar Brahimi: some progress in Syria talks
    In a statement, the UN envoy stresses that the two sides have found some common ground. Meetings will resume next month. Despite a desire to end the violence and the suffering of the Syrian people, nothing has been decided yet. Next week, a meeting is scheduled in Rome to discuss UN humanitarian aid in Syria. Both sides reject terrorism and violent extremism.

    28/01/2017 13:50:00 SYRIA – RUSSIA – TURKEY
    After Astana, Moscow manoeuvring to become the supreme arbiter of the Syrian conflict

    Trump signed two executive order to keep "terrorists" out of the US. Giving priority to Christian refugees, he suspends admissions for Syrians. For 90 days, Iraqis, Iranians, Somalis, Libyans, Sudanese and Yemenis are barred from the US. Iran’s president responds by rejecting walls. Meanwhile, talks about Syria’s future continue. On the recent Astana talks, we propose the reflection of an expert. Courtesy of the Jamestown Foundation.





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