United Nations to hold technical meeting over Syria in Astana

Global talks to try and reach a settlement to the years-long conflict in Syria have been pushed back by a week and a half, the United Nations said Tuesday.

Muslet rejected the suggestion that the opposition was responsible for the delay in talks, which he said was "not in the interests of the Syrian people".

Earlier in the day, a spokesman of the Syria's Tomorrow Movement told Sputnik that differing visions on the future of Syria among the opposition parties make it extremely hard to form a unified front, adding that the group opposes the "official" opposition's activities, namely "lenience" toward al-Nusra Front terrorist group, "which is unacceptable".

Syrian opposition officials rejected de Mistura's comments, considering them "unacceptable".

United Nations special envoy, Staffan de Mistura, has said that "the next round of talks on Syria in Geneva have been postponed until February 20".




The talks were set for 8 February but then postponed until 20 February to give the opposition more time to present a united delegation.

Riad Hijab, the chief of the Syrian opposition's High Negotiations Committee, said: "Selecting the Syrian opposition delegation is not the business of de Mistura".

The UN is hoping the talks will allow for it to take charge of negotiations, after Russia, Iran and Turkey began their own in the Kazakh capital Astana last week.

The UN-sponsored talks had been planned to begin in Geneva on February 8 but Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said last week they had been postponed.

Therefore, they welcomed the talks between the Government of Syria and armed opposition groups with involvement of the UN Envoy for Syria and expressed their appreciation to the President of Kazakhstan for hosting the event.

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