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    A Syrian national flag flutters near a general view of eastern Aleppo after Syrian government soldiers took control of al-Sakhour neigborhood in Aleppo, Syria in this handout picture provided by SANA on November 28, 2016.

    US to Remain Engaged With Russia to Advance Syria Political Process - State Dept

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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The United States will continue to engage with Russia in order to advance the political process on Syria, US State Department Deputy Spokesperson Roberto Palladino told reporters.

    "We are going to remain engaged with the United Nations and with other parties, including Russia, and we are going to continue to encourage all possible efforts be taken to advance the political track as called for in the United Nations Security Council Resolution 2254," Palladino said on Tuesday.

    Earlier in the day, the Russian, Turkish and Iranian foreign ministers during talks in Geneva agreed to make an effort to help convene the first session of the Syrian constitutional committee in early 2019, according to a joint statement.

    Palladino said the establishment of a credible and balanced constitutional committee is an important step towards a lasting de-escalation and political solution to the conflict in Syria.

    The United States, Palladino added, supports UN Special Envoy Staffan De Mistura’s efforts to facilitate political talks and looks forward to the special envoy’s assessment of this process at the UN Security Council on December 20.

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    In October, the leaders of Russia, Turkey, Germany and France held a summit in Istanbul, where they issued a statement calling for the Syrian constitutional committee to convene in Geneva by the end of 2018.

    The creation of the committee, which is expected to draft Syria’s new constitution, was first agreed upon during the Syrian National Dialogue Congress in the Russian resort city of Sochi in late January. The committee will consist of three groups representing the Syrian government, opposition, and women, experts and leaders of various tribes living in Syria.

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    Tags:
    political settlement, de-escalation, U.S. Department of State, United States, Russia, Syria
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