UN Syria envoy to meet Lavrov in Moscow on Friday

EPA-EFE/SERGEI CHIRIKOV

UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura (L) and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov enter a hall before their news conference in Moscow, Russia, 29 March 2018.

UN Syria envoy to meet Lavrov in Moscow on Friday


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Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov will hold talks with Staffan de Mistura, the United Nation’s Syria peace envoy, on Friday, Moscow’s state-run RIA news agency reported, citing the foreign ministry.

“I confirm that these talks are planned for Friday,” Moscow’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said.

De Mistura is conducting an intensive round of talks with the world powers with a view to relaunching the stalled peace talks between Damascus and the armed opposition, his office said in Geneva.

The UN Information Service in Geneva said De Mistura will be coming from Riyadh, where he held talks as part of a UN delegation headed by Secretary-General António Guterres. De Mistura most recently visited Russia on March 29, when he met with Lavrov and Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu.

Russia and Iran back Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad in the war in Syria, which is now in its eighth year and has claimed 500,000 lives.

The UN envoy also expects to meet European ministers and US officials at a Brussels conference on Syria set for April 24-25, before briefing the UN Security Council.

The last round of Geneva talks between the warring sides was held in December, followed by negotiations in Vienna in late January.

As part of the political process, De Mistura is drawing up a list of possible members of a committee to draft a new Syrian constitution.

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