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Syria peace talks to resume in Geneva on May 10

27 April 2016 21:05



Russia says Syria peace talks will resume in the Swiss city of Geneva on May 10.

“They will resume approximately on [May] 10, this has been announced by de Mistura,” Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov cited UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura as saying on Wednesday.

The Syrian government said on Tuesday that it had held a final session of talks with de Mistura in a “useful and productive round.”

De Mistura was to brief the Security Council on Wednesday in a closed-door session on his diplomatic efforts to end the war.

The foreign-backed opposition walked out of the Geneva-based negotiations last week, bringing the talks close to the breakdown.

Militant groups announced a new war against Syrian government forces after threatening to abandon UN-brokered talks in Geneva.

Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem said on the same day that Turkey and other countries were supplying terrorists in Syria with advanced weapons.

Wednesday is the last scheduled day of the UN-led negotiating round, but de Mistura hopes to reconvene both delegations.

His goal is to produce a paper with ideas shared by both sides on what a political transition for Syria would look like.

On Monday, Syria’s chief delegate at the talks Bashar Ja’afari said he submitted “amendments” to the working UN document on a political transition.

“Today we submitted constitutional amendments to the paper submitted to us by the special envoy, and we consider such amendments to be an integral part of this paper,” said Ja’afari.

Syria has previously ruled out negotiating over the presidency – specifically, over Assad’s departure from it.

“I can describe this particular round as useful and productive,” Ja’afari added, speaking of the round at which his opposition was not present.

De Mistura estimates that over 400,000 people have been killed in the conflict since 2011, which has furthermore displaced over half of Syria’s prewar population.

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