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More than 30 negotiators expected at inter-Syrian talks in Moscow — moderator

January 20, 2015, 16:49 UTC+3
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MOSCOW, January 20. /TASS/. More than 30 negotiators are expected to participate in inter-Syrian talks in Russia’s capital Moscow, Director of Russian Academy of Sciences Institute of Oriental Studies Vitaly Naumkin, who will moderate talks, told a news conference on Tuesday.

“Around 30 invitations were sent, but more participants are expected,” he said, noting that “some of them said that they do not want to come, but we will wait until talks.”

“Finally the number of negotiators will be clear after a Syrian opposition meeting in (Egypt’s capital) Cairo. We do not want to augment the number of negotiators endlessly, otherwise, there will be no opportunity to speak up for all,” Naumkin said, noting “this is quite bad if the meeting will turn in ‘a war of declarations’. It should be about talks.”

“A tough principle is that talks are held without preconditions,” he said, noting that “you will come, speak up, but cannot put forward your conditions preliminarily.”

Talks will have two stages, the expert added. “On January 26-27, opposition groups and the civil society will meet, a delegation from (Syria’s capital) Damascus will come on next two days, I do not know who will represent the Syrian government,” he noted.

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