TEHRAN, Jul. 06 (Press Shia Agency) – Iranian and French representatives on Syria affairs attending the Astana peace talks stressed on a political agreement as the only viable solution to the Syrian crisis.

Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hossein Jaberi Ansari, who heads the Iranian delegation to Astana talks, met with French government’s special representative on Syria affairs on the sidelines of the Astana talks on Wednesday.

During the meeting, which came after a recent visit to France by Iranian FM Zarif, the two sides highlighted their mutual points of agreement on the need for avoiding violence, realization of a political approach to the crisis, opposition to unilateral measures by foreign actors in Syria, as well as the need for paying more attention to the humanitarian aspects of the Syrian crisis.

The French representative discussed the viewpoints of his respective country on advancing the Astana process, and was in turn informed of Iran’s views and the prospect of cooperation from other governments for putting an end to the Syrian crisis.

Jaberi Ansari also held talks with the Kazakh foreign minister, Kairat Abdrakhmanov, during which the two sides exchanged views on the latest developments regarding the Astana conference and the current efforts for resolving the crisis in the war-torn country.

Earlier on Wednesday, Jaberi Ansari held his second meeting with Syrian envoy to the United Nations Bashar Jaafari, during which the two sides conferred on the details of de-escalation zones, and the way observers should be deployed.

The Iranian diplomat also met with Russian President Vladimir Putin’s point man on Syria, Alexander Lavrentiev, discussing the expert meetings to specify the limits of de-escalation zones in Syria.

The next high-level international meeting on Syria in Astana will be held in the last week of August 2017, according to the three mediators of the peace talks (Russia, Iran, Turkey) announced in a joint statement on Wednesday.

Prior to the next round, the joint working group of the three countries will meet in Iran on August 1-2 to continue delineation of de-escalation zones. 

MS/4022783/4022810