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UN Syrian envoy to join Astana talks, spokesman says

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-05-03 08:43

UN Syrian envoy to join Astana talks, spokesman says

File photo shows UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura briefs the media during an international conference on the future of Syria and the region, in Brussels, Belgium, April 4, 2017. [Photo/Agencies]

UNITED NATIONS - The UN special envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura will join the high-level meeting on Syria in Astana, the capital city of Kazakhstan, on May 3-4, UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric told reporters here Tuesday.

"In view of the urgency and importance of re-establishing a de-escalation of the situation in Syria and moving on confidence-building measures, he has agreed to attend the meeting as an observer at the invitation of the Kazakh government," Dujarric said at a daily news briefing here.

While in Astana, the special envoy will be supporting efforts by the guarantors of the ceasefire and other participants to de-escalate the military situation, he said. "He will be accompanied by a technical delegation of UN experts who have been present in previous Astana meetings."

De Mistura will also use the opportunity to conduct political consultations with the ceasefire guarantors and others that will be present, the spokesman said. "This will be particularly timely as he is at present putting finishing touches on his deliberations regarding the next round of intra-Syrian talks in Geneva."

The upcoming talks will be the fourth international conference on Syria, where a political crisis broke out in March 2011 and developed into a civil war.

The third round of the Syria talks was held in Astana on March 14-15. Representatives of Russia, Iran and Turkey, which had brokered a nationwide ceasefire in Syria, took part in the negotiations alongside the Syrian government delegation and experts from the United Nations, United States and Jordan.

 

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