Syria’s warring parties agree to Geneva talks: U.N. envoy

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Opposing sides in the Syrian civil war have agreed to reconvene in Geneva for negotiations on the constitution, United Nations Special Envoy Geir Pedersen said on Tuesday, saying that it could provide the arena for bridging “deep, deep mistrust”.

After nine years of conflict in Syria, Pedersen referred to “relative calm” in the last rebel-held enclave of Idlib as an opportunity for building confidence. He urged the United States and Russia, who support opposing sides, to start talks and back the peace process.

“As soon as the pandemic situation allows, they have agreed to come to Geneva and they have agreed on an agenda for the next meeting,” Pedersen told reporters, referring to the government and opposition.

“We need this to start somewhere,” he said. “The Constitutional Committee could be that arena where confidence starts to build.”

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