Syrian Govt. and Opposition Invited for Separate Talks in Geneva

Talks between the Syrian government and opposition figures will be held separately at the upcoming Geneva talks in May

United Nations spokesman Ahmad Fawzi announced that UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura has invited Syria’s government and opposition groups for separate talks in Geneva on May 4.

De Mistura plans for “low-key” talks with each of the main stakeholders over four to six weeks in the Swiss city, Ahmad Fawzi told a news briefing.

Major powers, along with regional and international players, have been invited to the peace talks. ISIS and the Nusra Front groups – which are classified as terrorist organizations – were not considered for participation, although some delegates present at the talks would be able to communicate with them, he added.

Separate consultations will involve representatives or ambassadors of the invited parties whose aim is to study the situation, Fawzi said.

UN Deputy Special Envoy for Syria Ramzy Ezzeldin Ramzy visited Moscow to meet with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov and Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov, to discuss ways to advance a political solution through dialogue.

Russia said it is willing to participate in the Geneva consultations after hosting two rounds of Syrian-Syrian talks in January and April of 2015, where the Syrian government delegation and opposition figures approved the “Moscow Principles”.

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