Iran to Take Part in UN-Hosted Consultations on Syria

The UN confirmed on Friday that Iran will take part in consultations on Syria that begin Monday in Geneva, according to The Associated Press (AP).

The UN special envoy on Syria, Staffan de Mistura, has said these are not a new round of negotiations but a series of individual meetings with "as many parties as possible" to get a sense of whether another round of negotiations is feasible.

Iran is a key ally of the Syrian government and did not take part in the two rounds of negotiations on Syria that failed.

Throughout the civil war in Syria, Iran has provided Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad with military support during his fight against the rebels.

In 2014, the UN invited Iran to take part in an international conference on Syria, evoking anger from the West and from opposition groups, who threatened to boycott the conference. The UN subsequently withdrew the invitation to Iran.

A delegation from the opposition Syrian National Coalition will attend the discussions in Geneva on Monday, when de Mistura is to hold separate talks with the rival sides.

De Mistura is the third UN envoy to tackle Syria's conflict, which began in March 2011 with peaceful anti-government protests and descended into a war after a harsh regime crackdown.

He has already angered rebel groups by saying  Assad was as "part of the solution" to the conflict in Syria. In response to those comments, rebels in Aleppo rejected de Mistura’s proposal for a temporary ceasefire in the city.

(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)

Source: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/194871

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