Russia And Syria Hopeful Of Amicable Talks

Russia is confident about the upcoming reconciliation talks between the Syrian government and opposition in Geneva on March 14-24, a Russian deputy foreign minister said on Saturday.

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Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov addresses his annual press conference in Moscow, capital of Russia, on Jan. 26, 2016. Russia intends to build relationships with western countries on the basis of equality and mutual benefit, and it will no longer yield to external pressure, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Tuesday. (Xinhua/Dai Tianfang)
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov addresses his annual press conference in Moscow, capital of Russia, on Jan. 26, 2016. Russia intends to build relationships with western countries on the basis of equality and mutual benefit, and it will no longer yield to external pressure, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Tuesday. (Xinhua/Dai Tianfang)

“We have reasons for optimism as there is a common understanding within the International Syrian Support Group (ISSG),” said Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov, who is also Russia’s presidential envoy to the Middle East and North Africa.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov addresses his annual press conference in Moscow, capital of Russia, on Jan. 26, 2016. Russia intends to build relationships with western countries on the basis of equality and mutual benefit, and it will no longer yield to external pressure, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Tuesday. (Xinhua/Dai Tianfang)
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov addresses his annual press conference in Moscow, capital of Russia, on Jan. 26, 2016. Russia intends to build relationships with western countries on the basis of equality and mutual benefit, and it will no longer yield to external pressure, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Tuesday. (Xinhua/Dai Tianfang)

The ISSG is co-chaired by the United States and Russia. The group is composed of the Arab League, the European Union, the United Nations and 17 countries including China.

Bogdanov called for forming a united group of the Syrian opposition, only with which “direct contact between the Syrian government and the opposition could be possible.”

The United States and Russia agreed on a plan for a cease-fire in Syria that began on Feb. 27. The tentative truce deal has been largely observed, though sporadic violations were reported.

Also on Saturday, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, who is in Saudi Arabia for a visit, reaffirmed that the new round of intra-Syrian talks should go ahead as planned. Enditem

Source: Xinhua

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