De Mistura Pushes for Political Solution to Crisis in Syria

De Mistura says meeting with Assad gave him the feeling that they are studying very seriously and very actively the UN proposal

An Aleppo representative for the Free Syrian Army (FSA) rebel group, however, effectively rejected the freeze, setting virtually impossible-to-achieve conditions, AFP reported.

 

"My meetings here with the government and with President (Bashar al-) Assad gave me the feeling that they are studying very seriously and very actively the UN proposal," the UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura said at a press conference in Damascus.

 

But the official Syrian news agency SANA said that de Mistura stressed the need to focus "on fighting the Nusra Front and the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terrorist organizations and give priority to reaching a political solution to the crisis in Syria."

 

He was quoted by SANA as saying, “We seek to reduce violence as much as possible and reach a comprehensive solution to the crisis in Syria. Everybody is convinced that solution should be political.”

 

“We are trying to communicate with large numbers of people inside Syria and abroad who have suffered from the ongoing conflict in the country in order to reach a comprehensive political solution,” de Mistura added.

 

He stressed that “the Syrian people need to reach a constructive political solution after three and a half years of suffering,” indicating that the focus in the current stage will be on Aleppo.

 

On Monday, Assad said he was ready to study the UN plan to "freeze" fighting in Aleppo, which has been divided into government- and rebel-held areas since an insurgent offensive in mid-2012.

 

De Mistura put the so-called "action plan" forward last month to allow for aid deliveries and to lay the groundwork for peace talks, saying Aleppo would be a "good candidate" for such a freeze, AFP added.

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