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    Turkey Still Opposes Participation of Syrian Kurds in Geneva Talks

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    Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov said that UN Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura and the Russian side hope that Syrian Kurds could join next stage of Intra-Syrian talks.

    GENEVA (Sputnik) – The participation of the Kurds in Geneva talks is crucial for the Syrian conflict settlement, however, Ankara is still opposing their joining the negotiations, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov said Tuesday.

    "The Kurdish participation is recognized by Mr. [UN Envoy for Syria Staffan] de Mistura, US partners have the same understanding to a certain extent, but, unfortunately, this issue encounters a tough position of Turkey, which objects the Kurdish participation in the negotiation process," Gatilov told reporters.

    Both de Mistura and the Russian side hope that Syrian Kurds could join next stage of Intra-Syrian talks, he stressed.

    "The Kurdish aspect was prevalent in the course of our contacts, as the Kurds indeed represent a major part of the opposition, they control more than 15 percent of the Syrian territory, they are a significant political force, and without their participation it is difficult to expect any progress in resolving issues on the Syrian crisis settlement," Gatilov outlined.

    Gatilov also noted that there is no progress in compiling a list of terrorist organizations in Syria at the ongoing intra-Syrian talks in Geneva.

    "I can't say there has been any significant progress on this issue," Gatilov told reporters at a news briefing in Geneva.

    "I have to admit that we have some disagreements with other members of the International Syria Support Group in terms of which organizations should be considered terrorist," Gatilov said adding that their nature must be determined by their actions on the Syrian soil rather than on political statements.

    The Russian diplomat insisted that Moscow views Jaish al-Islam and Ahrar ash-Sham as terrorist organizations that should not be part of Syria reconciliation talks.

     

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    Tags:
    Syrian crisis, Intra-Syria talks, Gennady Gatilov, Turkey, Syria, Russia
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