Syria peace talks set to begin Monday in Astana

The opposition delegation will depart for Astana on Saturday

Syria peace talks set to begin Monday in Astana

World Bulletin / News Desk

Representatives from Syrian government and opposition delegation are set to meet on Monday to reinforce a fragile cease-fire and put an end to the six-year deadlock in the country.

The peace talks will be held in Kazakh capital of Astana, which would see the attendance of delegations from both Iran and the U.S. alongside the guarantor countries Turkey and Russia.

About 50 representatives from the opposition side - including advisers and negotiation members - are expected to take their seats at the negotiation table.

Mohamed Alloush, a member of the Jaysh al-Islam (Army of Islam) faction, is among those who will represent the opposition’s delegation.

Speaking to an interview on Thursday, Alloush said: "Our biggest goal is to immediately stop the bloodshed."

The opposition delegation will depart for Astana on Saturday.

Syrian ambassador to the United Nations, Bashar al-Jaafari heads the regime side while the Turkish delegation will be chaired by Deputy Undersecretary of the Foreign Ministry, Sedat Onal.

Turkish National Intelligence Organization and General Staff officials will also be present at the talks.

Russia's Special Envoy on Syria Alexander Lavrentiev and Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov are the figures from the Russian side.

The UN Special Envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura is also expected to head to Astana with a delegation.

The release of captives held by Bashar al-Assad regime, prisoner swap and providing humanitarian aid to regime-controlled areas are the issues due to be tabled during the upcoming talks.

The UN-led Geneva process, which aims to end Syria’s civil war, calls for the establishment of an interim government -- including both regime and opposition representatives -- until a new government can be elected in public polls.

Talks between the Syrian government and opposition negotiators are slated to begin on Jan. 23. in the Kazakh capital.

Following last month's ceasefire deal, brokered by Turkey and Russia, the Astana meeting comes as part of ongoing efforts by both countries to find a political solution to the six-year-old conflict.

Syria has been locked in a devastating civil war since early 2011, when the Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with unexpected ferocity.

Since then, hundreds of thousands of people are believed to have been killed and millions more displaced by the conflict.

Last Mod: 21 Ocak 2017, 00:30
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