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Syrian opposition agrees to informal talks over Geneva-2 in Moscow

November 07, 2013, 12:44 UTC+3

Russia's Foreign Ministry: main focus on Geneva-2 preparations according to the Russian-US initiative, with participation of all parties, including opposition

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Talks on Geneva-2 peace conference. EPA/VIOLAINE MARTIN

Talks on Geneva-2 peace conference. EPA/VIOLAINE MARTIN

MOSCOW, November 7 (Itar-Tass) - The Syrian opposition has agreed to visit Moscow for informal talks ahead of the international conference on the Syrian issue, dubbed Geneva-2, Russian Foreign Ministry said Thursday.

The decision followed a number of meetings in Geneva on Wednesday. Russia's presidential Middle East envoy, Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov met with the head of the foreign wing of the Syrian National Coordinating Committee for Democratic Change, Heisam al-Manaa, the leader of Kurdistan’s Democratic Union Party Salih Muslim, the head of the United Nationals Democratic Alliance in Syria Rifat al-Assad and the chairman of the Coalition of Secular and Democratic Syrians.

“The main focus in the comprehensive exchange of opinions over the situation in Syria was on preparations for the international conference Geneva-2 according to the Russian-US initiative, put forward on May 7,” the Foreign Ministry said. “The sides stressed the urgent need for prompt political settlement of the crisis by means of a Syria-wide dialogue without any preconditions and with the participation of proxies of the Syrian government and main oppositional political and ethnic and religious groups”.

The Syrian party, the Foreign Ministry said, appreciated Russia’s consistent efforts for the sake of fully implementing the Geneva communiqu the so-called Action Group for Syria agreed upon on June 30, 2012.

“In this context they were positive about Russia’s proposal for informal talks among the broad spectrum of Syrian social and political groups in Moscow and expressed interest to participate,” the Foreign Ministry said in conclusion.

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