15:14 GMT24 October 2020
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    The first day of consultations among Syria's opposition members in the Kazakh capital has not let major disagreements, one of the talks' participants Mohammad Bassam Imadi told RIA Novosti on Monday.

    ASTANA (Sputnik) — Another round of talks kicked off in Astana on Monday and will wrap up on Wednesday without the Syrian government's delegation in attendance. Kazakh Foreign Minister Erlan Idrissov met with the participants earlier in the day.

    "Not a bad start. Very encouraging at the moment, but let us await the end of talks when the results will be on hand."

    Imadi is a member of the Syrian National Council, which has been part of the broader National Coalition for Syrian Revolution and Opposition Forces since late 2012.

    "As for the differences, there were no particularly strong disagreements apart from certain moments, such as differing viewpoints on the description and classification of terrorism."

    According to the Syrian opposition member, the first day of talks focused on humanitarian issues, like forming a corridor for international organizations such as the Red Cross and the Red Crescent to deliver aid to Syria.

    On Tuesday, participants are expected to draw out a road map on regulating the conflict.

    The talks in Astana are being held amid the ongoing round of consultations in Geneva, mediated by UN Special Envoy to Syria Staffan de Mistura. The Geneva talks between the Syrian opposition, the government, regional players and UN Security Council members is expected to last for up to six weeks.

    The latest intra-Syrian reconciliation talks were held in Moscow in the months of January and April.

    Syria has been engulfed in civil war since 2011 as government forces loyal to President Bashar Assad are confronted by several opposition and Islamic militant groups, including the Nusra Front and the Islamic State.

    The UN estimates that ongoing hostilities have claimed more than 220,000 lives and forced millions to flee their homes.


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