Iraq News

Syria peace talks inch forward on final day

UN-sponsored Syria peace talks limped towards a close on Friday (March 3rd) after more than a week in Geneva, with little sign of progress beyond possible agreement on an agenda for more substantial negotiations, AFP reported.

UN envoy Staffan de Mistura, who had warned from the outset against expecting "miracles", has met daily with delegations from the Syrian regime and opposition groups.

As in previous rounds the delegations have not met face-to-face, apart from a symbolic joint opening ceremony last week.

On Thursday night, the UN envoy held talks until 3 a.m., one source said. On Friday, he was meeting again with all sides, ahead of a closing press conference.

While no "breakthrough" has been achieved, said Jihad Maqdisi, head of the Cairo platform, one of two smaller opposition groups in Geneva along with the main High Negotiating Committee, "we have achieved a momentum".

"God willing, this will be the end of the procedural matters so that in the next round, which may be held soon, we can achieve substantive progress," he said.

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