Turkey Likely to Raise Level of Representation at Upcoming Astana Syria Talks

© AFP 2022 / Kirill KUDRYAVTSEVRepresentatives of the Syria regime and rebel groups along with other attendees take part in the first session of Syria peace talks at Astana's Rixos President Hotel
Representatives of the Syria regime and rebel groups along with other attendees take part in the first session of Syria peace talks at Astana's Rixos President Hotel - Sputnik International
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Turkey is likely to raise the level of its representation at the new meeting on Syria in Astana, compared to the previous one in mid-February, and send Foreign Ministry Deputy Undersecretary Sedat Onal as the delegation head, a source at the talks told Sputnik.

ASTANA (Sputnik) — Sedat Onal headed the Turkish delegation at the first round of Astana talks in January. However, the last meeting in mid-February was attended only by the foreign ministry experts from the Turkish side.

"Turkey is going to send a Foreign Ministry's Deputy Undersecretary, " the source said.

Head of Damascus delegation Bashar Jaafari criticized such low level of representation and said it did not correspond to Turkey's status as one of the ceasefire guarantor states, expressing hope the next round of Astana talks would be attended by same people who came to the Kazakh capital in January.

According to Sputnik's source, Iran will be represented again by Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Jaberi Ansari.

Participants in a meeting on Syria in Astana - Sputnik International
Syrian Armed Opposition to Decide on Astana Talks Participation in Coming Hours
The first round of Astana talks on Syria brokered by Russia, Turkey and Iran were held on January 23-24 and resulted in a Moscow-Tehran-Ankara agreement on the establishment of a trilateral mechanism to monitor the ceasefire in Syria.

The second round of the Astana talks took place on February 15-16, with the participants agreeing to set up a ceasefire monitoring group, encompassing Iran, Russia and Turkey, that would report to the United Nations.

The third round of intra-Syrian talks in Astana will take place on March 14-15, with the consultations to be held on the first day and the plenary session to take place on Wednesday.

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