TEHRAN, Nov. 01 (Press Shia) – Iran, Russia and Turkey have issued a joint statement on the 7th International Meeting on Syria in Astana which includes agreement on convening a Congress of Syrian National Dialogue as an initiative of Russia.
The seventh round of the Astana talks was held on 30-31 October with the participation of representatives from the three guarantor states including Iran, Russia, and Turkey, as well as the Damascus government and opposition, the United Nations, Jordan and the United States.
While the negotiations failed to reach an agreement on the two key points regarding the demining and exchange of detainees, the three guarantor states released a joint statement at the conclusion of the two-day meeting which includes agreements on implementation of the de-escalation deal, advancing the political process, further increase of international humanitarian aid, and convening a congress to bring about a lasting political solution to the ongoing conflict in the country.
The full text of the joint statement is as follows:
The Islamic Republic of Iran, the Russian Federation and the Republic of Turkey as guarantors of the observance of the ceasefire regime in the Syrian Arab Republic:
– welcoming progress in the implementation of the Memorandum on the creation of de-escalation areas in the Syrian Arab Republic of 4 May 2017 during the past six months;
– reaffirming their strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of the Syrian Arab Republic;
– emphasizing the significant reduction of violence on the ground in Syria as a result of measures taken to strengthen and maintain the ceasefire regime, including launching the de-escalation areas and creating the security zones:
1. Emphasize progress in the fight against terrorism and elimination of DAESH/ISIL, Nusra Front and all other individuals, groups, undertakings and entities associated with Al-Qaeda or DAESH/ISIL as a result of the launch of the de-escalation areas and reaffirm their determination to take all necessary measures to continue the fight against them within and outside the de-escalation areas.
2. Underline that the Syrian crisis has no military solution and should be solved only through the political process on the basis of the implementation of UNSC resolution 2254 (2015) and call upon the conflicting parties to benefit from the emerging favorable conditions on the ground with a view to stepping up efforts to advance the political process underway in Geneva.
3. Agree to discuss in consistence with the UN-led Geneva process the Russian Federation`s proposal to convene a Congress of the national dialogue about which the Russian side shared information with the guarantors.
4. Emphasize the need for the conflicting parties to take confidence‑building measures, including the release of detainees/abductees and the handover of the bodies as well as identification of missing persons, to create better conditions for political process and lasting ceasefire.
5. Underline the necessity to further increase the international humanitarian aid to Syria, to provide rapid, safe and unhindered humanitarian access to all those in need and in this regard remind of the relevant provisions of the Memorandum of 4 of May 2017.
6. Reaffirm their determination to continue implementing the provisions of the Memorandum of 4 May 2017 and other decisions adopted earlier within the framework of the Astana process.
7. Express their sincere gratitude to the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan, His Excellency Nursultan Nazarbayev and the Kazakh authorities for hosting in Astana the International Meeting on Syria.
8. Decide to hold the next high-level in Astana in the second half of December 2017.