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Iran Press TV

13th round of Syria talks held in Kazakh capital

Iran Press TV

Thu Aug 1, 2019 05:06PM

A 13th round of talks aimed at finding a political solution to the ongoing conflict in Syria has officially gotten has been held in Kazakhstan's capital Nur-Sultan.

Delegations from three guarantor states of the Syria peace process - Iran, Russia and Turkey - along with UN representatives arrived in the city, seeking an end to the eight-year conflict in Syria.

Observers from Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq were also reportedly joining the talks for the first time.

According to Syria's official news agency SANA, a Syrian government delegation headed by UN Ambassador Bashar al-Ja'afari arrived in Nur-Sultan on Thursday morning to participate in the two-day talks. Representatives of some armed Syrian opposition groups have also confirmed their participation.

On the sidelines, the Syrian government delegation held separate meetings with the Russian president's special envoy for Syria Alexander Lavrentiev and Ali Asghar Khaji, the Iranian foreign minister's senior aide for special political affairs, to discuss the latest developments in Syria.

The talks are expected to deal with the situation in Syria in general, and in the northwestern region of Idlib in particular where the foreign-backed terrorist organization of Jabhat al-Nusra controls the majority of the area.

The Syrian army is in the midst of an offensive, which began more than some months ago, in the militant-held province to liberate it from the grip of Takfiri terrorists.

Turkey, which backs some militant groups operating in Idlib, opposes an upcoming Syrian army liberation operation in the province fearing a fresh wave of refugees. However, Iran and Russia strongly support the planned counter-terrorism battle.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has recently stressed his government's determination to eliminate terrorist groups which are holed up in Idlib and attack civilians in neighboring areas.

The Thursday talks are also expected to concentrate on forming a committee on discussing Syria's new Constitution, the return of the displaced Syrians, and the means to help Syria reconstruct the country.

Last month, the United Nations and the Syrian Foreign Ministry reported progress in talks on a constitutional committee that could pave the way for a political solution to the conflict. Damascus reiterated that the constitutional committee should be a purely Syrian affair to be decided by the Syrian people alone without any foreign interference.

Damascus, backed by Russia and Iran, has managed to liberate almost the entire country from terrorists in recent months.

Syria has been gripped by foreign-backed militancy since March 2011. The Syrian government says the Israeli regime and its Western and regional allies are aiding Takfiri terrorist groups wreaking havoc in the country.

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