Consultations on Syria conflict to begin on Monday

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

UN-led consultations with parties involved in the Syria conflict will begin at UN Headquarters in Geneva on Monday.

The so-called "Geneva consultations" will be held with each group separately and are expected to last for an initial period of five to six weeks.

Around 220,000 people have died in Syria and a further four million have fled as refugees during the four year civil war.

Ana Carmo reports.

The UN announced on Friday that the Special Envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, has invited as many of the parties to the conflict as possible to take part in the dialogue.

This primarily includes representatives from the Syrian government, opposition forces and civil society, as well as regional and international stakeholders.

They will discuss with the Special Envoy what has been described as the "dire" situation in Syria.

The UN's spokesperson in Geneva, Ahmad Fawzi, shared more details with the media.

"We don't expect any concluding communiqués that will be signed by everybody; there will be no final curtain call. When he [Staffan de Mistura ] thinks he has finished the process, he will sit down, assess progress if any, and then report to the Secretary-General with his assessment and recommendations."

Mr Fawzi added that there will be no photo opportunities and no interviews while the consultations are being conducted.

Ana Carmo, United Nations.

Duration: 57″

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