Iranian official: terrorists at Syria talks in Geneva
Top Iranian official has cautioned the UN over terrorists trying to take advantage of Syria peace talks underway in Switzerland. Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hossein Amir-Abdollahian made the remarks in a phone conversation with UN special envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura on Sunday. “Precautions must be taken so that the terrorists do not enter the talks and take advantage of them under a new guise,” he said. “At the end of the day, it’s the people of Syria who will decide about their country’s future,” he noted. Earlier, de Mistura met with delegates from the main Syrian opposition coalition, the so-called High Negotiations Committee.
But the talks were disrupted when Daesh Takfiri terrorists attacked an area near the holy shrine of Hazrat Zeinab, the granddaughter of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him), killing at least 60 people and injuring 100 others. Delegates from the Syrian government and its divided opposition groups have gathered in Geneva for the UN-brokered negotiations to end the country’s conflict. The talks are to be held in an 18-month timetable under a resolution unanimously approved by the UN Security Council.
Adopted on December 18, 2015, the resolution calls for a nationwide ceasefire in Syria and formation of a “credible, inclusive and non-sectarian” government within six months as well as UN-supervised “free and fair elections” within 18 months.