US presses Syria group to join Geneva 2 conference

The United States says it is making efforts to convince an important Syrian opposition group to join the peace talks planned for next month in Geneva.

“There have been many ups and downs in this process. And that’s not unexpected given how challenging the situation is on the ground,” US State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said on Tuesday.

“But we continue to press for the opposition to have a representative body ageneva 2t the Geneva conference,” she added.

The so-called Syrian National Council (SNC), which is the biggest bloc within the foreign-sponsored Syrian opposition coalition, said last week that it would not join the forthcoming Geneva 2 conference on the ongoing crisis in the Arab country, and would quit the coalition if it partakes in the conference.

George Sabra, the president of the SNC, said on Sunday, “The Syrian National Council, which is the biggest bloc in the coalition, has taken the firm decision… not to go to Geneva, under the present circumstances.”

Russia and the US have been pushing to bring the Syrian government and the opposition to the negotiating table.

The Geneva 2 conference is seen as a chance to find a political solution to the Syrian crisis. The event has been delayed for months, but Moscow and Washington are now trying to fix a date for it in mid-November.

Sabra claimed that the regional and international context does not give the impression that Geneva 2 will offer anything to the Syrians.

“We will not participate in a conference that is intended to hide the failure of international politics,” he noted.

Russia and China have urged the presence of the Islamic Republic of Iran in the conference.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on October 11 that Western countries are on the right track regarding their attitude to Iran’s participation in the peace talks on the Syrian issue.

On September 29, UN-Arab League Special Envoy to Syria Lakhdar Brahimi stated that it would be beneficial if Iran takes part in the Geneva 2 conference and there is the possibility of inviting the Islamic Republic.

Syria has been gripped by deadly unrest since 2011. Reports indicate that the Western powers and their regional allies — especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey — are supporting the militants operating inside the country.

According to the United Nations, more than 100,000 people have been killed and millions displaced in the violence.

By Press TV


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