New York – Syria peace talks are progressing slowly, but taking promising steps, the UN’s special envoy for Syria said Monday.

Staffan de Mistura cited the safe zones deal agreed in Astana, Kazakhstan, as a step towards success as he briefed the UN Security Council via video link from Geneva.

But reports of continued fighting in Hama, Homs and Damascus, and government attacks on armed opposition groups, continue to overshadow progress, dpa reported.

De Mistura restarted four days of bilateral talks with the Syrian government and opposition on May 16, 10 days after Russia, Turkey and Iran reached a deal to create the safe zones.

He said the Geneva process was seeing fewer obstacles, such as possible walkouts, but did not report any tangible results.

There has been a “tentative recognition” in the last month that there can be no military solution to the conflict, De Mistura said.

“I hope that the coming months can see further steps in the right direction.”, he added.

Source: Qatar News Agency

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