The third day of trilateral talks on Syria including Russia, Iran and Turkey came to a culmination with the three agreeing on a mechanism to support the ongoing fragile ceasefire. The countries with major role in the Syrian conflict ensure to monitor the ceasefire for possible violations.
Russia and Turkey organized the meeting that included representatives both from the Syrian government and the opposition to further strengthen a nationwide ceasefire and pave way for further political talks. The objective is to reach a final solution to the deadly crisis in the Arab country which erupted back in 2011.
The closing statement of the talks was read by Kazakh prime minister which emphasis to ensure the sovereignty of Syria.
Following are the key points of the trilateral discussions:
- It is understood that there is no military solution to the conflict and that the crisis can only be resolved through diplomatic means.
- Parties agreed to put their all out effort to assist the ongoing ceasefire and monitor any violations.
- The three countries also agreed on the participation of the armed opposition int the UN brokered upcoming talks in Geneva.
- The opposition however seemed dissatisfied by some agreement terms.
- One of the most important points of the agreement was to fully respect and protect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Arab state.
Astana talks were unique and different than any other talks on the Syrian war in the sense that, some countries like Saudi Arabia, Qatar and United States were absent. The Syrian government had expressed it’s opposition towards the presence of Saudi Arabia and Qatar in the talks saying the two countries have been engaged trying to implement a policy of regime change in the country.
The United States was also not invited to take part in the discussions. Iranian foreign minister Mohammed Javad Zarif had expressed his country’s opposition to the presence of US in the talks saying US will possibly torpedo the talks. Though no official invitation was made to US, the country’s ambassador to Kazakhstan attended the meeting as an observer.