Syria’s opposition coalition agrees to participate in Geneva II conference
DAMASCUS – The Syrian opposition coalition has conditionally agreed to attend Geneva II conference designed to end the country’s bloody confict, a statement reaching here said on Monday.
“A consensus has been reached among the coalition members about the need to take part in the Geneva II conference,” the Syrian National Coalition (SNC) said in the statement issued after two-day talks in Istanbul between different opposition groups.
The conditions outlined by the SNC for attending the conference are a guarantee from the the Syrian government to allow relief agencies to enter besieged areas and release political prisoners.
The SNC also required a guarantee that any political conferences should lead to a political transition in Syria, according to the statement.
The SNC had been divided on whether to attend the meeting and the conditions to go to Geneva, leaving the date of the Geneva II conference up in the air.
The Syrian government said it would take part in the conference without preconditions.
The SNC on Sunday said that it would not attend peace talks in Geneva unless it received the backing of the rebels on the ground.
The Arab League (AL) has called on the Syrian opposition to attend the Geneva II conference and form their delegation as soon as possible.
China, India and Russia Sunday stressed the need to find a political solution to the Syria crisis when the foreign ministers of the three countries met in New Delhi.
Russian Foreign Minister Seigei Lavrov said that all three countries hope the Geneva II conference on Syria should be held as soon as possible.
The Geneva I conference was held on June 30, 2012 with the adoption of a communique seeking to find a diplomatic solution to Syria’s prolonged conflict.