WASHINGTON, November 7. /TASS/. The United States admits that the launch of the Syrian Constitutional Committee would be impossible without Russia’s participation, but Moscow and Washington have differences regarding the political role of this body, a senior State Department official told reporters.
In his words, the committee’s role in defining the political future of Syria is yet to be determined.
"Clearly, the Assad regime would like to see it have its minimal effect. We would like to see it have a maximal effect, and that’s where the tension line lies with us and the Russians," the official said.
"Without the Russians, we wouldn’t have gotten this constitutional committee," he said, adding that the US was still uncertain about what kind of role Moscow assigns to it.
The official said that Washington maintains "very close contacts" with Russia on Syria in the military and political domain.
At the same time, he said that the launch of the Constitutional Committee became possible thanks to "the international community’s pressure strategy" directly against the government of Bashar Assad, and "indirectly against its main sponsor, Russia."
The decision to set up a Syrian constitutional committee was made during the Syrian National Dialogue Congress, held in the Russian resort of Sochi on January 30, 2018. The committee is made of 150 people, divided up into 50 delegates for the Damascus government, 50 representatives for the opposition and 50 for the civil society.
The first session of the Syrian Constitutional Committee took place in Geneva on October 30.