Syrian opposition raises issue of detainees with De Mistura

GENEVA, March 15 (KUNA) — The UN envoy to Syria Staffan De Mistura on Tuesday said that he discussed with the Syrian opposition mechanisms of resuming talks on the political course for settling the crisis in the country.
Representatives of the Syrian opposition’s High Negotiations Committee raised the issue of detainees in Syrian government’s jails during a meeting that lasted for almost an hours and a half with the international envoy in Geneva, De Mistura told a news conference.
The release of detainees was a key opposition demand ahead of the indirect peace talks with the Syrian regime.
The progress that has been made on humanitarian aid and the reduction of violence, may prompt addressing the detainees’ issue, he said.
The delegation also demanded broadening the scale of humanitarian aid to include the besieged areas at home.
In addition, they offered general principles that could affect the future of Syria, related to the constitution and the coming period. They will be analyzed by a UN task team, comparing it with a document offered by the Syrian government on points of compatibility and difference, the envoy said.
De Mistura noted that the significant decision to withdraw Russian forces from Syria will have a positive effect on the Intra-Syrian Talks in Geneva.
In the meantime, member of the National Coalition for Syrian Revolution and Opposition Forces Ahmad Ramadan said in a statement that Moscow’s decision is a step in the right direction, and a sign of failure to save President Bashar Al-Assad and his regime.
The Coalition called for the withdrawal of all foreign forces and militants from Syria, mainly the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and affiliated militias.
Ramadan urged Russia to assume its responsibility and secure success for a political solution in Syria through further pressure on Al-Asad’s regime. (end) ta.msa