ISIL And NUSRA Front Excluded As Syria Talks Seeks Ceasefire

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UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura has said that peace talks on Syria will push for a nationwide ceasefire for all parties other than the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and al-Nusra Front armed groups.

De Mistura announced at a press conference in Geneva that peace talks, originally planned to start on Monday, have been rescheduled for Friday and are expected to last for six months. 

 

 

He said that he expected to send invitations to the talks on Tuesday and that the initial round of discussions was likely to last two to three weeks.

"The discussions are still ongoing and I have been very much aware of what happened in Geneva 2. Therefore we have been careful and extremely thorough in wanting to make sure that when and if we start, we start on the right foot," De Mistura said on Monday.

He added that all parties would be involved in ceasefire efforts, other than the two groups designated as "terrorists" by the UN.

Khaled Khoja, the President of the Syrian National Coalition, said in a press release that they are ready for the talks despite the delay.

Last week, the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said the talks between the Syrian government and opposition groups should start by the end of January as planned, but the invitation list has remained a sticking point.

The talks in Geneva will come after a set of meetings in Vienna and New York between the international community and regional players. During those meetings Saudi Arabia was expected to come up with the opposition list to attend the Geneva talks.

 

Posted on January, 25 2016

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