Lavrov blames Washington for deadlock in Syrian talks in Geneva

Moscow, SANA-Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov blamed the US for a deadlock in the Syrian dialogue in Geneva, accusing it of not exerting enough pressure on its allies in the region.

“It is Washington’s fault, not Moscow’s that those taking part in the Syrian settlement have failed to sit down at the negotiating table so far,” Lavrov said at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF).

“Ensuring that these people sit down at the [negotiating] table, in full compliance with a clear [UN] Security Council mandate, has been impossible, and not because of us, but because of our American partners who for some reason are unwilling to pressure their allies in the region, and these allies have categorical stances.”

According to the minister, there is no progress on Syrian political settlement as it has been impossible to gather all groups that should be represented.

“There is no progress in the political process. The reasons we are hearing — I just met with the UN secretary general and his special Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura, we had a frank talk — they cannot launch a political dialogue with the participation of all Syrian parties,” the minister stated.

“The Turks are not letting in the Kurds, and the so-called Riyadh opposition group refuses to recognize the members of other opposition groups as equals and demands to be named the main negotiator,” he added.

Russia has given nobody any promises regarding Syria, Lavrov said commenting on recent statements by US Secretary of State John Kerry.

Kerry stated earlier in the week that Russia must understand that Washington has “very limited” patience left in regard to violations of the cessation of hostilities agreement in Syria.

The foreign minister said he was surprised by Kerry’s statements and urged the United States to show more patience in regard to Syria.

“First of all, we have not promised anyone to do anything. We have given no promises to anyone, but agreed that everyone working on the Syrian settlement will be guided by agreements reached by the International Syria Support Group, which have been written down in UN Security Council Resolutions,” he added.

Lavrov reminded that the US has pledged last February that the opposition it backs will pull out from the areas under Jabhat al-Nusra and ISIS control within a couple of weeks or three weeks at the latest, but nothing of that happened, wondering at the US inability to deliver on its promises.


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