UNSC Holds 'Constructive' Talks on Syria in Positive Atmosphere - Russia

Isaac Cain
July 15, 2017

"No breakthrough, no breakdowns, no one walked out", de Mistura told reporters, summing up the results of Geneva-7 round of negotiations.

On Friday, the seventh round of intra-Syrian talks wrapped up in Geneva.

The envoy, however, ruled out the possibility of the Syrian High Negotiations Committee (HNC) uniting with the Moscow- and Cairo-based opposition platforms for direct talks with the Syrian government, during the ongoing round of the Geneva talks, which ends on Saturday.

The head of the Syrian government delegation, Bashar al-Ja'afari, said earlier that his team has not been asked to hold direct talks.

Assad s delegation, led by Syria s United Nations ambassador Bashar al-Jaafari, has declared the president s fate off limits.

Parties to the pan-Syrian talks, a new round of which took place in Geneva from July 10 through to July 14, managed to make definite progress but still there was no breakthrough, Staffan de Mistura, a special envoy of the UN Secretary General for Syria told the final news conference.

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Alluding to foreign backers of the main Syrian opposition group, including Saudi Arabia and Turkey, as well as those who support smaller factions, Ja'afari said that "the most important thing is for us to have a national partner, and not a client for foreign agendas".

"I'm not pushing for it. We are actually pushing for areas where they do have common points". They do not control territory on the ground or have strong links with armed groups engaged in the war, according to Reuters.

This week's talks were held as a ceasefire was in effect in southwest Syria.

The latest round of ceasefire came after a ceasefire in southern Syria brokered last week by the U.S. and Russian Federation, which provides a relatively better atmosphere for negotiations.

Although the Syrian government has repeatedly described opposition representatives as terrorists, de Mistura said he hoped to push all sides to at least sit in the same room during the next round of talks in September. Jordan was also involved in the partial truce deal.

It is hoped that the government and the opposition representation will return to Geneva for the eighth round in August, in a process sponsored by the United Nations with priorities such as elections, the new Constitution, inclusive governance and the struggle against terrorism on the agenda.

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