UN backs Russia-Iran-Turkey initiative for Syria talks 

December 30, 2016

TEHRAN – The United Nations special envoy for Syria has expressed support for an initiative brokered by Russia, Iran and Turkey to launch dialogue between the Syrian government and armed opposition groups, IRNA reported.

Staffan de Mistura’s support for the Syria talks came after his telephone conversation with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Wednesday, the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

In a meeting in Moscow on December 20 the foreign ministers of Russia, Iran, and Turkey agreed to guarantee Syria peace talks and backed expanding a ceasefire in the war-torn country.

“Iran, Russia and Turkey are ready to assist in preparing the agreement in the making between the Syrian government and the opposition and to become its guarantor,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said, citing a joint statement. “The ministers agree with the importance of widening the ceasefire, of free access for humanitarian aid and movement of civilians on Syrian territory.”

Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev said on Monday he was ready to host multilateral talks on the Syrian conflict. "Kazakhstan is ready to host all sides for talks in Astana," Nazarbayev said during a visit to St. Petersburg where he met Russian President Vladimir Putin.

De Mistura said the UN is ready to help draw up an agreement between the Syrian warring sides in Astana.

Lavrov also urged UN officials to stop airing false news about the developments in Syria.
It is also necessary that some Security Council members to stop baseless reports about the situation on the ground and instead ship humanitarian aid to the country.

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