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Moscow stresses Syrian Kurds should understand Syria is indivisible

March 25, 15:45 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov expressed hope that a united group of Syrian opposition would be formed at some point representing the interests of all sides in the Syrian conflict
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© Valeriy Sharifulin/TASS

MOSCOW, March 25. /TASS/. Moscow is explaining in its contacts with Kurds that Syria is an indivisible country that should not be broken into parts, Russia's presidential envoy on the Middle East and North Africa, Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov told reporters on Friday.

"Our task is to help Kurds, to find common ground, common approaches. National Syrian interests should prevail over all others," Bogdanov said. "They should proceed from the fact that Syria should not be broken apart as it will be bad for Syrians themselves," he added.

The diplomat noted that Russia maintains good relations and contacts with Kurds. "We maintain good contacts with Kurds. We keep in touch not only with Democratic Union Party and several other parties and organizations," he said.

Moscow hopes for direct talks between Damascus and Syrian opposition in April 

MOSCOW, March 25. /TASS/. Moscow hopes for direct talks between Syrian government and opposition to take place at the next round of Geneva negotiations, Russia's presidential envoy on the Middle East and North Africa, Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov told reporters on Friday.

"We are always supporting this," Bogdanov said in response to a TASS question about the possibility of such contacts.

"It would be ideal if one opposition delegation was maximally representative and included representatives of all opposition circles," he added.

The diplomat noted that the Syrian opposition’s High Negotiations Committee (HNC) expressed readiness to hold talks with Moscow and added that Russia welcomes such contacts. "I told him to come to Moscow and to contact (Russia’s permanent representative at UN and other international organizations in Geneva) Borodavkin if necessary," the diplomat noted.

Bogdanov also said he is ready to meet with HNC representatives outside of Russia - in Persian Gulf countries which the diplomat will visit at the beginning of April. "I will visit Persian Gulf countries at the beginning of April - to Qatar, Kuwait, then to Egypt. If someone (from HNC representatives) turns out to be there at the time, I will meet them with pleasure," he noted.

The deputy foreign minister expressed hope that a united group of Syrian opposition would be formed at some point representing the interests of all sides in the Syrian conflict.

"We hope that the short pause will start now, the so-called homework. Everyone should study de Mistura’s document and come [to Geneva] with a more concrete response to it," Bogdanov said.

The diplomat also expressed hope that the principal basis for negotiations are UN resolutions and Geneva Communique.

The next round of inter-Syrian negotiations should start no later than on April 11 though some delegations may join the talks later, according to de Mistura.

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