UNITED NATIONS, October 16 (RIA Novosti) – UN and Arab League Special Representative for Syria said Thursday he is planning to visit Moscow to discuss the threat of the Islamic State (IS) extremist group.
"I am now planning after Lebanon to go to Tehran and then to Turkey of course and to many other countries in the region…I am also planning to go to Moscow," Staffan de Mistura said after meeting with Lebanon's Prime Minister Tammam Salam.
"We are still in the process of understanding what has changed in the region in terms of some perception of how to address in a political format, through a political process, the conflict in Syria due to new factors which have taken place in the region and in particular [the IS, also known as] Daesh," de Mistura said, explaining the reason behind his planned visit.
According to the special representative, the conflict in Syria has been significantly affecting Lebanon, but if Lebanese authorities manage to stabilize the political situation in their country, it will help resolve the situation in Syria.
Anti-government protests broke out in Syria in March 2011, leading to a civil war, which has been going on in the country for three years. Syria is also suffering from the advance of the IS, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) or the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).
The IS has been fighting against the Syrian government since 2012 and has recently launched attacks against the Lebanese Hezbollah movement on the Syrian-Lebanese border.
Hezbollah, which is a paramilitary and political organization originating in Lebanon's Shiite population, has been fighting the IS since the very beginning of the Syrian crisis, having sided with the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad in the battle against extremism.
Moscow has condemned the rise of terrorism in Syria, and stressed that efforts at resolving the situation in the country should focus on finding a peaceful solution to the Syrian crisis.