EYEAFRICA TV: New York, USA: United Nations Envoy for Syria has said the latest round of Intra-Syrian talks has seen incremental progress with ‘less rhetoric, more business like atmosphere’ The latest round of the Intra-Syrian talks to reach a negotiated peace in the war-torn country concluded Friday (19 May) as planned at the United Nations in Geneva.
Speaking to the media in the Swiss city after wrapping up the talks, the UN Special Envoy Staffan de Mistura resumed that “this round of talks, there is less rhetoric, more business like atmosphere and we make incremental progress, our goals remains clear: negotiated framework agreement, and negotiated political transition process as per (Resolution) 2254. One step per time”.
The top negotiator for Syria further explained that “we simply started a process of separate expert meetings on legal and constitutional issue, chaired by the OSE (Office of the Special Envoy), the UN experts and I am pleased that this process has indeed began”. De Mistura said that “it began yesterday; we had only 4 days, so we had to start after some preparation and it began yesterday and continued indeed today. And I look forward to push this additional element forward and enriching through that the UN facilitated Intra- Syrian talks in Geneva”.
The Special Envoy said that the four baskets – political transition, free and fair elections, a new constitution and counter-terrorism measures – and the official discussions will have to continue. He said that “we do have now a new process which can and should take place while the talks take place and perhaps even between them. So that we actually go much more business-like, especially on a subject that we believe covers every other subject which is the constitutional ideas and issues”.
Staffan de Mistura stressed that the UN is not seeking to write a constitution and it was for the Syrian people to do so. After 5 days of meetings with the Syrian government and opposition groups, as well as with representatives from the United States and the Russian Federation, the UN Syria Envoy is looking into further talks during the month of June. “I had today a constructive and timely trilateral meeting with senior representatives of the United States and Russia early this afternoon.
We discussed the talks and beyond. I plan to brief the Security Council early next week as a customary and as my duty I will be consulting with the Secretary-General on dates for the next round of talks” he concluded.