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Another round of intra-Syrian talks to be held not earlier than in two weeks — diplomat

May 30, 2016, 19:15 UTC+3

According to Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov, the situation has complicated after resignation of Syrian chief opposition negotiator Mohammed Alloush

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© Valery Sharifulin/TASS

ROME, May 30. /TASS/. Another round of talks between Damascus and the Syrian opposition may begin in a span of two weeks, not earlier, however no exact date has yet been appointed, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov said on Monday.

"Nothing will take place before Ramadan. [United Nations Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Syria Staffan] de Mistura has taken a break after the Vienna meeting of the International Syria Support Group. He has not yet appointed any concrete date for the next round. Judging by certain indirect signals, it will take place not earlier than in two weeks. Nevertheless, I would like to stress, the official date has not yet been announced," he said.

According to the Russian diplomat, the situation has complicated after resignation of Syrian chief opposition negotiator Mohammed Alloush. "It only proves that the opposition has no common platform and no common approach to how to conduct negotiations with the government delegation," Gatilov said, adding that constructive dialogue can be conducted only with the unified opposition.

Alloush’s resignation, in his words, complicates the entire negotiating process. "It might delay the resumption of dialogue between the Syrian parties," he said.

Kurds' participation in intra-Syrian talks

According to the diplomat, it is hard to say when Kurdish representatives will be able to join the intra-Syrian talks despite the fact that all the negotiators agree that the Kurdish side should be involved in the process.

"The Kurds are a real political and military force; they are fighting against the Islamic State [IS is a terrorist organization banned in Russia] and other terrorist groups. It is hard to speak about prospects for involving the Kurds but all the sides understand that they should join [the talks]. Both [US special envoy on Syria Staffan] de Mistura and his American partners agree with that," Gatilov said.

He added that Russia has insisted that Kurds be present at the Syria peace talks ever since the Syrian political settlement process got under way. "Without them, it is impossible to determine Syria’s future," the Russian deputy foreign minister went on to say.

"But our partners keep silent when asked about the next round of the talks when exactly they [the Kurds] are going to join the process," Gatilov concluded.


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