Lavrov, at a joint press conference with his U.S. counterpart John Kerry and UN Special Envoy to Syria Staffan De Mistura, described UN Security Council resolution No. 2254 on Syria as “excellent and good”.
The five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council were struggling to agree on a draft resolution endorsing an global bid to end the five-year-old civil war in Syria, as ministerial talks began in NY.
In its first resolution to focus on the politics of ending the brutal war, the 15-nation Council, meeting at the Foreign Minister level here yesterday, asked UN chief Ban Ki- moon to convene government and opposition representatives in formal talks next month on a political transition as a step to lasting peace, in line with the 2012 Geneva Communique.
Eighteen pro-government fighters and several rebels were killed, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a British-based monitoring group.
Speaking to MPs earlier this week, Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond held out the possibility that the meeting of the International Syria Support Group (ISSG) could produce a text for the council which will not be vetoed by Russian Federation.
“We are under no illusions about obstacles that exist”, Kerry said.
Although this is a positive development for Syria, US hardliners and their Middle Eastern allies, who tried to push through a “regime change” scenario in Syria, are not happy about it.
It includes talks between the government and rebels, but doesn’t mention what role, if any, President Assad will play.
But Washington and Moscow remain split over the fate of Assad and which groups fighting in Syria should be designated “terrorists” and therefore excluded from negotiations.
Any halt to hostilities would not apply to air strikes against so-called Islamic State and other terrorist groups, it makes clear, amid fears they could otherwise benefit.
“It will be up to Syrians to decide”, said Amir Abdollahian. “What Iran is concerned about is what the people of Syria want”, he said.
The peace plan agreed to in Vienna last month by 17 nations as well as the U.N., European Union, Arab League and Organization of Islamic Cooperation sets a January 1 deadline for the start of negotiations between Assad’s government and opposition groups. Hijab served as prime minister and agriculture minister under Assad before defecting in 2012, the highest-profile Syrian official to do so in more than four years of the conflict.
“Despite the important step that we have taken with today’s resolution, despite the progress we have made in Vienna, despite the important steps forward taken at the meeting in Riyadh, there is still a very long way to go”.
More in AmeriPublications
South Korea appeals to China to rein in North over nuclear tests
South Korea’s Defense Ministry couldn’t immediately confirm the report.January 21, 2016
Satellite SpaceX fail as rocket topples over while landing
According to a message on Twitter wrote by SpaceX founder Elon Musk, one of the rocket’s landing legs didn’t latch into...January 21, 2016
Ruble Falls to 82 Against US Dollar, 90 Against Euro
Russian Federation is running a budget deficit of 3 percent of GDP this year, and the government is looking to cut...January 21, 2016
19 killed in university attack in Pakistan
He said the operation had ended and security forces were clearing the area, with most of the student victims shot dead...January 21, 2016
Moldova political crisis: Protesters break into parliament
Police arrested several protesters after they clashed with security forces and broke into the parliament building on Wednesday, according to local...January 21, 2016
Military step up search and recovery operation after Somalia raid
MOGADISHU Somalia (Xinhua) – Somalia’s Islamist militant group Al-Shabaab claimed on Sunday to have killed 100 Kenyan soldiers serving under the...January 21, 2016
Sarah Palin: Speculation rife former Alaska governor set to endorse Donald Trump
“And that starts from the top”, she said. “You deserve the best!”January 21, 2016
Bombing close to Russian embassy in Kabul kills 7
At least seven people died on Wednesday when a suicide bomber targeted the Moby Group, a major media production company in...January 21, 2016
NYS Health Officials Advise MDs to Watch for Zika Virus
The move comes after United States health chiefs issued an alert on Friday advising pregnant women to avoid travelling to Brazil...January 21, 2016