UN Envoy to Kick Off Syria Talks in Geneva

Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura. UN Photo / Jean-Marc Ferré

Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura. UN Photo / Jean-Marc Ferré

The United Nations (UN) Secretary-General’s Special Envoy on Syria will begin a series of consultations with Syrian stakeholders and other regional and international actors.

The idea is to take stock of their views on reopening peace talks based on the 2012 Geneva Communiqué, a spokesperson for the Organization has announced.

It is estimated that Syria crisis has already claimed over 220,000 lives while more than 12.2 million people continue to require life-saving aid as a result of the conflict, which began in March 2011.

The conflict has also provoked massive displacement with more than 4 million people having sought refuge in neighbouring countries, while a further 7.6 million are displaced within Syria.

Moreover, about 2,000 people including men, women, and children have been killed and many others wounded in the past six months of airstrikes carried out by the U.S.-led coalition forces.

The UN spokesperson confirmed that Special Envoy Staffan de Mistura had invited “as many of the parties as possible” to the Geneva Consultations on Syria scheduled to begin Monday (May 4) at UN Headquarters in Geneva and expected to last for an initial period of five to six weeks.

The meetings, according to the UN, would serve to facilitate discussion on the “dire situation” in Syria today and provide a forum for all parties to deliver their “candid views on where we stand vis-a-vis implementation of the Geneva Communiqué almost three years since it was adopted.”

According to the UN spokesperson, the Special Envoy and the Deputy Special Envoy, Ramzy Ezzeldine Ramzy, will conduct closed and separate consultations with each party.

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