20:25 GMT +324 September 2017
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    Good Chance to Implement Annan Plan on Syria - Lavrov

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    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov believes that the international community has a good chance in Geneva of finding a path forward to stimulate the implementation of Kofi Annan's Plan on the Syrian conflict.

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov believes that the international community has a good chance in Geneva of finding a path forward to stimulate the implementation of Kofi Annan's Plan on the Syrian conflict.

    "We have a very good chance tomorrow in Geneva to find a common denominator and find a path forward in order to stimulate the implementation of of Annan's Plan from both sides of the Syrian [conflict]," Lavrov said during a briefing after a meeting with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in St. Petersburg.

    The UN and Arab League envoy to Syria, Kofi Annan, proposed on Wednesday to create an interim Syrian government that would include both opposition figures and those loyal to President Bashar al-Assad.

    Annan’s initiative comes almost three months after the implementation of the six-point peace plan which was followed by a deadly massacre in the village of Houla, as well as numerous attacks in Damascus and other Syrian regions.

    The new plan will be discussed at the meeting in Geneva on Saturday where the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China, Turkey, Iraq, Kuwait and Qatar are expected to participate.

    Lavrov has said the Syrian government is ready to withdraw its armed forces from the country's cities in parallel with the forces of the Syrian opposition.

    Lavrov also noted that he felt a change in the United States' position after speaking with Clinton about Syria.

    "I felt there was a change in that no ultimatums were voiced, or that the paper that is now being discussed (results from the Geneva meeting) is subject to change," Lavrov said.

    According to UN estimates, some 10,000 people have been killed in Syria since the beginning of a popular uprising against President Bashar al-Assad in March 2011. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Lodon-based organization with a network of activists in Syria, has put the death toll at 12,000.

     

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