Syrian government, opposition set for first face-to-face talks

Syrian government, opposition set for first face-to-face talks

The first face-to-face talks between the Syrian government and the opposition - after nearly three years of civil war that have claimed more than 130,000 lives - were set to start Saturday, dpa reported.

Delegations representing the Syrian government and the opposition National Coalition were due to arrive at the UN headquarters in Geneva. Lead UN mediator Lakhdar Brahimi was to mediate, with talks expected to last through the end of the week.

According to Brahimi, the opening session will be devoted to "procedural matters."

The two parties were then scheduled to meet later Saturday to open up the first discussions on a host of issues, which could include the release of detainees and clearing the way for humanitarian aid convoys to reach towns and villages under siege.

The high-profile US- and Russia-backed talks have been touted by the international community as the last chance to bring an end to a spiraling conflict.

The future of the long-awaited talks was placed in doubt Friday when Damascus threatened to pull out after a disagreement about the agenda. That delayed the start of the direct talks a day, but Brahimi managed to bring both sides back to the table.

The Syrian government had insisted that the talks be devoted to "tackling terrorism" and refused to discuss a political transition in the country - a central point in a previous deal signed between the two sides in June 2012 and a precondition by the opposition for entering direct talks.

Weighting in from Tehran, Iranian President Hassan Rowhani noted that terrorism must first be brought under control before there can be hope for solving the Syrian crisis, the Iranian news agency Fars reported.

"You can't overcome the crisis in Syria with peace conferences. First you've got to get all parties to agree on the way to fight terrorism," he said. The next step would be creating a humanitarian corridor

Only after those two criteria have been reached, would the conditions be right for talks, said Rowhani.

The exclusion of Iran from the talks - demanded by the opposition - was criticized by various players in the negotiations this week.

Uzbek-Korean JV names volume polyethylene output in 2020
Uzbek-Korean JV names volume polyethylene output in 2020
Benefits provided for Uzbek entrepreneurs likely to be extended
Benefits provided for Uzbek entrepreneurs likely to be extended
Uzbekistan, Turkey to work on approving agreement on preferential trade
Uzbekistan, Turkey to work on approving agreement on preferential trade
Loading Bars
Latest
Kazakhstan bans import of Azerbaijani tomatoes
Review of Georgian exports to China
Azerbaijani troops hold several events in connection with January 20 tragedy (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Georgia increases wine exports to Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan becomes Georgia's second export partner
Kazakhstan reports decrease in mutual trade volume with Vietnam
Geostat reveals data on China's exports to Georgia
Iran reveals COVID-19 data for January 20
Turkey mobilized to support Azerbaijan in post-war period, says ambassador
Uzbek-Korean JV names volume polyethylene output in 2020
Container shipping rates surge in Georgia
Passenger transportation volume by road surges in Kazakhstan
Georgia may lift restrictions on international flights
Georgia sees decrease in electricity consumption
January 20 events of 1990 aimed to strangle Azerbaijan’s fight for independence – historian
Turkmenistan’s Mary State Power Plant names production indicators of 2020
Iran dismisses having any 'secret talks' with Biden's team to bring US back to JCPOA
New geopolitical reality following Karabakh war to make contribution to GDP growth in Azerbaijan - Economy Minister
Iran to commit to JCPOA obligations - if Europe, US return - FM Zarif
Commerzbank deepens partnership with Microsoft
Central Bank reveals volume of property appropriated by Georgian commercial banks
Kazakhstan's Baikonur Cosmodrome starts launching works for 2021
Azerbaijani Kapital Bank’s total assets increase as of 2020
Carnations blooming today along with khari bulbul in Azerbaijan – Turkish FM
Exports of Iran's steel products declines
French ambassador to Azerbaijan talks about January 20 tragedy
Turkmen carpet weaving enterprise reveals production volume
Iran may cancel additional protocol on nuclear deal - Foreign Policy Commission
Azerbaijan keen to develop relations with Turkey, Pakistan in almost all spheres
Azerbaijani people honoring memory of 20 January tragedy victims (PHOTOS)
Caspian Shipping Company’s marine flotilla reveres memory of January 20 martyrs (VIDEO)
Armenians destroyed mausoleum of outstanding Azerbaijani poet in Shusha - monitoring results
Azerbaijan's State Service for Property Issues unveils amount of transfers to state budget
Supply of Indian manufactured vaccines to neighbouring and key partner countries
Azerbaijan progresses with cotton yields in 2020
EU's Michel calls on Biden to form new transatlantic pact
Jewish community in Azerbaijan revere memory of victims of January 20 tragedy
India to gift 2 mn doses of Covid-19 vaccine 'Covishield' to Bangladesh
India, Japan sign Memorandum of Cooperation to help promote movement of skilled workers
Georgia reports 469 new COVID-19 cases for Jan.20
UK ambassador to Azerbaijan makes statement on January 20 tragedy
Benefits provided for Uzbek entrepreneurs likely to be extended
Share of domestic exports up in Georgia
Azerbaijan discloses number of mandatory health insurance services in 2020
Azerbaijani president, first lady visit Alley of Martyrs on 31st anniversary of 20 January tragedy (PHOTO)
India, Oman Hold Discussions On Bilateral Cooperation
Turkmenistan's Turkmengas to buy chemical products via tender
Uzbekistan, Turkey to work on approving agreement on preferential trade
Azerbaijan’s Kapital Bank reveals 2020 net profit
EU Delegation mourning victims of “Black January” tragedy - statement
Copper ores and concentrates top export goods in Georgia
Azerbaijan holds minute of silence to honor January 20 victims (PHOTOVIDEO)
Modi gets SOS message for vaccine from Caribbean nation that stood by India
Black January means symbol of struggle for independence - Charged ’Affairs of Azerbaijani Embassy in Ethiopia
Iran’s South Pars Gas Company beats new record on export
First Vice- President Mehriban Aliyeva shares Instagram post on 20 January tragedy (PHOTO)
Uzbekistan’s Central Bank to place bonds on republican currency exchange
Georgia sees decrease in external merchandise trade
Turkmenistan's Mary region opens tender for construction
Turkmenistan signs contract for aircraft purchase from French Airbus
UK inflation rises a little more than expected in December
Largest share of mortgage loans falls on Uzbekistan’s Samarkand region
Article on Black January tragedy of Azerbaijani Consul General in LA published
EU4Business supports expansion of Georgia’s biggest digital creative agency to global markets
Кazakh Electricity Grid Operating Company to buy construction materials via tender
Azerbaijani oil prices continue to grow
Phased COVID-19 vaccination continues in Azerbaijan - Ministry of Health
Kazakh Embassy extends condolences to Azerbaijan on 20 January tragedy's anniversary
Number of Uzbek banks raise dollar rate
EBRD names loans volume provided for Uzbekistan during COVID-19
EBRD, State Electricity System of Georgia implement new energy project
Uzbekistan names start date for vaccination against COVID-19
Azerbaijani Ministry of Agriculture holds meeting on results of cotton growing dev't (PHOTO)
Azerbaijani company reveals growth in 2020 total insurance revenues
Aide to Azerbaijani president shares post on Twitter on anniversary of 20 January tragedy (VIDEO)
As always, on Day of National Mourning, we mourn with Azerbaijan - Turkish Embassy
Iran, Cuba joint COVID-19 vaccine to begin new phase of testing in Havana
Iran, Iraq discuss transit operations
Electricity generation potential of Iran's Kerman Province announced
Russia's Gazprom increases purchases of natural gas in Turkmenistan
Azerbaijan applying innovations for agrochemical soil analysis
Turkic Council commemorates heroes of Azerbaijan on occasion of 20 January tragedy anniversary
Azerbaijan to ease the health protocols for Iranian transit and export trucks
Azerbaijan’s Consulate General in Los Angeles produces short film on Black January tragedy
Iranian currency rates for January 20
Azerbaijan issues data on lending to communications, transport sector for 11M2020
European oil majors to prioritize large-scale developments in two regions
European oil majors to increase green investments to 16-17% of total spending
Azerbaijan’s Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources discusses proposals for plastic bags
Iran's export transportation costs doubles
Greek parliament mulling IGB deal
Azerbaijani ministry talks on countrywide cybersecurity
Uzbekistan reveals COVID-19 data for January 20
Azerbaijani MFA issues statement on anniversary of 20 January tragedy
Oil rise on hopes of U.S. stimulus and crude stocks drawdown
Kazakhstan significantly decreases petroleum oil exports to Greece
Big Azerbaijani bank’s volume of total assets down
Russian and Azerbaijani sappers continue defusing mines in liberated territories (PHOTO)
Over 2,000 foreigners apply for 'Remotely from Georgia' state programme
Kyrgyzstan increases number of flights to Turkey
All news