Lavrov: Russia Won’t Set Deadlines for Resolving Syrian Crisis

Moscow II forum commences in Russian capital between Syrian regime and opposition groups

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Russia will not set deadlines for resolving the Syrian crisis, stressing the need for efforts to be based on reality.

In a press conference on Monday, Lavrov said the number of participants involved in the inter-Syrian talks currently being held in Moscow have increased in comparison to the first round of talks held in January.

Lavrov said that Russia is not pleased that the opposition’s National Coalition again refused to send representatives, and that the refusal is motivated by special considerations for the Coalition’s leaders.

The foreign minister said Russia’s efforts aren’t based on designating one group of the opposition as a representative; but to realize the points agreed upon in June 2012 and the first Geneva conference, which calls for the involvement of all elements of Syrian society in comprehensive dialogue.

The second round of inter-Syrian talks began today in Moscow, with the first two days of the forum dedicated to meetings between opposition figures. On Wednesday the opposition will meet with delegates of the Syrian Arab Republic headed by Syria’s Permanent Representative at the UN, Bashar al-Jaafari.

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