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Syrian opposition delegation, Sochi summit give hope for success in Geneva - Mogherini

November 25, 15:35 UTC+3

The EU stresses, "the primacy of the UN-led Geneva process, and its readiness to support it not only from a political and diplomatic point of view but also with all the economic and humanitarian work"

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BRUSSELS, November 25. /TASS/. The joint delegation of the Syrian opposition at the Riyadh conference, as well as the statement made by leaders of Russia, Iran and Turkey after the summit in Sochi give hope for success of the talks in Geneva, the EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said in statement published in Brussels on Saturday.

"The opposition now has a unified delegation willing to negotiate without preconditions on the agenda set by the UN. The strengthening of women's participation in the opposition delegation is a critical step. This, together with the statement of the three Astana guarantors in Sochi, allows us to now look forward to the next round in Geneva with the strong hope that the way is now paved for concrete decisions between the Syrian parties including on transitional governance, a constitutional process and UN-supervised free and fair elections," the document reads.

The EU stresses, "the primacy of the UN-led Geneva process, and its readiness to support it not only from a political and diplomatic point of view but also with all the economic and humanitarian work developed under the Brussels process," Mogherini said in the statement.

"In Syria, the fighting is not over. The humanitarian situation is deteriorating. Attacks on civilians, as seen recently in Atareb and Eastern Ghouta have to stop. Obstacles to humanitarian access across Syria have to be removed. We count on the active support of the ceasefire guarantors Russia, Iran, and Turkey, to facilitate access to and from the de-escalation areas," the statement reads.

Riyadh and Sochi

The Syrian opposition’s unified delegation to direct talks with Damascus in Geneva on November 28 will be led by Nasr al-Hariri, Al-Hadath TV said on Friday. According to Al-Hadath, this decision was finally taken by opposition factions after a conference in Riyadh. The delegation will include 36 people, and eight mandates were given to the Moscow and Cairo groups.

The National Dialog Congress with the participation of the Syrian government and representatives of opposition is planned to be held in Sochi in the near future, said a joint statement adopted on September 22 upon results of the Syrian settlement talks between the presidents of Russia, Iran and Turkey, Vladimir Putin, Hassan Rouhani and Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

"The three presidents expressed support to the intra-Syrian dialog with the participation of representatives from all segments of the country’s society," the document said.

Under the statement, Putin, Rouhani and Erdogan "urged representatives of the Syrian government and opposition speaking in favor of sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of the Syrian state to take constructive part in the Syrian National Dialog Congress in Sochi in the near future."

The three heads of state also agreed to support success of this intra-Syrian forum. "Iran, Russia and Turkey will hold consultations and make a decision pertaining participants in the Congress," the document said.

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