United States declines to send delegation to Syria peace talks in Astana

Miranda GreerJan 23, 2017

The U.S. will not send an official delegation to planned Syria peace talks, it said Saturday, citing "the immediate demands of the" presidential transition.

The United States will be represented at the talks by U.S. Ambassador to Kazakhstan George Kroll.

To the major session will be attending also UNSG's special envoy to Syria Mr. Staffan de Mistura and Syrian government and opposition delegations.

"The meeting in Astana is the vital initiative of Russian Federation and Turkey, aimed at reaching peace and stability in Syria".

He said Damascus regarded the peace talks as only being between Syrian parties and that Turkey would not participate in dialogue.

The Kazakh capital of Astana, a city of less than 1 million people, is set to begin hosting peace talks on Monday regarding Syria's almost six-year civil war that has killed almost half-a-million people.

Following last month's cease-fire deal, brokered by Turkey and Russian Federation, the Astana meeting comes as part of ongoing efforts by both countries to find a political solution to the six-year-old conflict in Syria. Substantive financial, political, and ideological support was offered to the militants by countries opposed to the Syrian government, most notably the United States, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey.

The United States has backed the rebels.

Assad summarized that "terrorist groups", referring to rebels, need to disarm.

Not having all the players willing to engage in the peace process makes success less likely, says Stanislav Pritchin at the Research Center on Central Asia at Moscow's Oriental Studies Institute.

He also noted that there had been no negotiations to date between Syrian and Turkish governments regarding the conflict. A delegation from the Syrian opposition has already arrived in the Kazakh capital. "And, it gives some optimism to observers, to people living first of all in Syria, that it might be a very important step forward to resolving this long-term civil war in Syria".

Related Articles:

« Previous article
Next article »

Popular Pages

OPEC, Russia 'Ahead Of Schedule' On Oil Output Cuts
Kuwaiti Oil Minister Essam Al-Marzouq, who chairs the five-member committee, said they will meet next after March 17 in Kuwait. It expressed satisfaction over compliance with the agreement on cutting oil production to stabilize oil market.

Mexico turns over drug lord 'El Chapo' to the US
Guzman was airborne shortly after the announcement, a spokeswoman for the Mexican Attorney General told ABC News . The latest occurred in 2015 when he escaped through a tunnel that had been dug underneath his cell.

Is North Korea Planning a Long-Range Missile Launch?
The missiles are believed to be shorter variations of the KN-08 and KN-14 ICBMs, prototypes presented in past military parades. North Korea has become increasingly bold in touting its nuclear capabilities.

Rescuers search for survivors after avalanche hits hotel in central Italy
The disaster struck during a driving snowstorm on Wednesday, hours after four earthquakes above magnitude 5 rattled the region. Some survivors reportedly took refuge beneath a collapsed portion of the hotel, lighting a fire to keep warm.

Jallikattu: Tamil Nadu determined to take the bull by the horns
A bag of coins was attached to the hump of the bull, which was for the bull tamer to win if he was successful in his mission. The chief minister of Tamil Nadu has approached the central government to issue an ordinance for allowing the sport.

Spice Girls' Ginger gives birth to son
In her Instagram caption, Halliwell wrote that their latest addition was "a handsome little brother for Bluebell and Olivia". "Lovely news.

Donald Trump Inauguration Draws 30.6 Million
Topping both Obama and Trump in 1981 was the inauguration of Ronald Reagen, a former actor, which was watched by 41.8 million viewers.

Brexit latest: United Kingdom retail sales fall sharply in December
During the three months ended December, retail sales dropped 0.3 percent as compared to the previous three-month period. Sales volumes, excluding fuel, were 1.4 per cent higher in the fourth quarter than the third quarter.

Hattiesburg Salvation Army damaged during storms
A large part of Arkansas was under a tornado watch, and forecasters warned that severe storms could develop in the evening. Mississippi Power crews are assessing damage and working to restore power in the areas that are safe for them to work.

32 killed, 50 injured as train derails in southern India
At least 13 people were killed and about 100 others were injured after train derailed in India late on Saturady, Sputnik reported. In the last serious accident, 150 people died when a train derailed late previous year in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh.