Churkin: “Syrian Opposition” delegation came to Geneva to complain, not to hold dialogue

Russia's Ambassador to the United Nations Vitaly Churkin listens to U.S. President Barack Obama (not pictured) speak at the Security Council of the 69th United Nations General Assembly at U.N. Headquarters in New York, September 24, 2014. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS) - RTR47KQ8

New York, SANA – Russia’s Permanent Representative to the UN Vitaly Churkin said that the “Syrian Opposition” delegation came to Geneva to complain, not to hold dialogue, stressing that there mustn’t be preconditions for resuming the Geneva talks on Syria.

In a press conference following closed discussions at the Security Council regarding the report by UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura, Churkin noted that de Mistura did not hold the Russian airstrikes responsible for suspending the talks in Geneva, in response to accusations to this effect made by Western and regional sides.

Russia’s Representative said the discussions with de Mistura were good, with the Envoy presenting his ideas in a diplomatic manner without directing any accusations or criticism towards Russia.

He also said that the airstrikes carried out by the Washington-led alliance in Syria are illegal, as the alliance didn’t receive approval from the Syrian government.

Churkin hoped that intra-Syrian dialogue in Geneva would be resumed before February 25th, which is the date set by de Mistura, adding that the “opposition” wasn’t represented in a sufficient manner that complies with the Vienna statements and resolution no.2254, and that Turkey undermined dialogue by refusing the participation of representatives of Kurds.

He stressed the need for more work to reach a better representation of the opposition, and the need to prevent repeating the negative Geneva 2 experience when they wanted to impose the “coalition” as the representative of all the opposition, noting that the Syrian Arab Republic delegation was ready for dialogue.

Churkin said that Russia will propose new ideas during the meeting of the international support group for Syria on February 11th in Munich, and that it will continue making efforts for events to run in the proper course in Syria, hoping that all partners would shoulder their responsibility.

Hazem Sabbagh

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