NUR-SULTAN, Kazakhstan – All participants of the process toward a peaceful settlement in Syria, also known as the Astana process confirmed their participation in the 13th round of talks on Syria, which will be held in the capital of Kazakhstan, Nur-Sultan, on 1-2 August, Kazakhstan’s Foreign Ministry said on 31 July.
Iran, Turkey and Russia, as well as representatives of the Syrian government and the opposition will join the international high-level meeting on Syria, the ministry said.
At the moment, all previously invited parties have confirmed their participation. Russia’s Special Envoy to Syria Alexander Lavrentiev will attend the session while the Turkish and Iranian delegations will be led by Deputy Foreign Minister Sedat Onal and Foreign Minister’s Senior Aide for political affairs Ali Asghar Khaji, respectively, the Kazakh Foreign Ministry said. In addition, both parties to the conflict in Syria – a government delegation headed by Syria’s UN Envoy Bashar Jaafari and an armed opposition led by Ahmad al-Touma will be attend the planned meeting, the Kazakh Foreign Ministry said.
For the first time during the upcoming meeting, the delegations of Iraq and Lebanon will take part as observers. A decision to join the negotiation process was taken on the basis of the previous meeting in Astana.
The UN Secretary-General’s Syria envoy, Geir Pedersen, is not going to attend the Syrian talks in Nur-Sultan, due to health reasons, Kazakhstan’s Foreign Ministry said on July 31. “We regret to say that the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Syria, Geir Pedersen, will be forced to skip the upcoming talks. The UN delegation will be led by his deputy,” the ministry said in a statement.
US representatives will not attend the 13th meeting on Syria in Nur-Sultan.
In addition, representatives of the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees will arrive in Nur-Sultan to participate in the regular meeting of the working group on the release of detainees/hostages on the fields of inter-Syrian talks.
Russia, Iran and Turkey launched the Astana Process in January 2017 in Kazakhstan to bring all parties in the Syrian conflict to the table to find a peaceful solution to the crisis.