Groups of the Syrian opposition at talks in Astana do not have a single leader and coordinated strategy. As reported RIA Novosti, said on Monday, January 23, Deputy Minister of foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan Roman Vasilenko.
“Here are about 15 Syrian opposition groups. These are organizations that generally supported the ceasefire achieved at the end of December, with the active assistance of Russia and Turkey. As such, the head of the delegation, as I understand it, the Syrian armed opposition is not defined, but nevertheless there are representatives of all those groups that are involved here,” said the diplomat, noting that none of those present has no authority to speak on behalf of the opposition.
Vasilenko also said that it is still unknown, will there be direct talks between the Syrian authorities and representatives of the groups. “This issue is now being discussed, and it will be clear to the beginning of negotiations,” he said.
Deputy foreign Minister of Kazakhstan assessed the situation around the negotiations as a complex, however, expressed hope that the dialogue will be held. “We hope that we will help the parties to find common ground, to strengthen the cease-fire that was reached thanks to Russia and Turkey, and to create a basis for the resumption of fully fledged negotiations under UN auspices in Geneva on 8 February,” the diplomat said.
January 22 the head of the delegation of the Syrian authorities at the international meeting on the Syrian settlement in Astana Bashar al-Jaafari stated the need for additional consultations with representatives of other delegations to find common ground. Earlier in the day, Minister Counsellor of Russia to Kazakhstan Alexander Musienko recognized that consultations are held in Astana, hard.
International meeting on the question of settlement of the Syrian conflict is expected to begin on 23 January and will last two days. The main goal of the talks is the confirmation of the armistice agreements concluded at the end of December.
Participation in the negotiations confirmed seven parties: the government and the opposition in Syria, Russia, Turkey, Iran, USA and the UN special envoy on Syria Staffan de Mistura.