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MOSCOW, April 24. /TASS/. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov met with United Nations Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura in Geneva to discuss ceasefire consolidation in Syria and the necessity to involve specialized United Nations organizations in the process of demining, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Monday.
"The sides exchanged views on the current state of prospects for political settlement in Syria with due account of the recent political contacts in various formats," the ministry said. "The sides stressed the necessity of further efforts of all key players for the sake of strengthening the ceasefire, finding solutions to humanitarian problems of the Syrian population, as well as the necessity to involve relevant organizations of the United Nations system to the process of demining."
A meeting in Kazakhstan’s capital city of Astana scheduled for May 3-4 and a following new round of intra-Syrian talks in Geneva are expected to be major steps towards Syrian settlement. However the situation on the ground has dramatically deteriorated after the April 4 incident with the use of chemical weapons in Khan Shaykhun and the US’s subsequent air strike on April 7. As is know, the situation on the ground may impact the negotiating process.