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Parties to Syrian constitutional talks begin drafting process

Latest round of talks focusing on new constitution for Syria to continue until Friday

Peter Kenny   | 20.10.2021
Parties to Syrian constitutional talks begin drafting process

GENEVA

Representatives of the Syrian Constitutional Committee have stated a commitment to presenting "constitutional texts" and would begin to identify provisional areas of agreement and disagreement, the office of the UN special envoy on Syria said Tuesday on the second day of new talks. 

Jenifer Fenton, the spokeswoman for the UN Special Envoy for Syria, Geir Pedersen, said the current round of talks is scheduled to last until Friday.

Both sides filed in for the negotiations and then left after the day.

A new round of talks focusing on a new constitution for war-torn Syria began Monday in Geneva, with the opposition side noting they will continue but said the outcome is unclear at this stage.

"The constitutional committee has now begun a process of drafting," said Fenton at a UN briefing in Geneva.

"All delegations have stated their commitment to presenting draft constitutional texts and to begin to identify provisional areas of agreement and disagreement, including by proposing amendments and submitting revisions."

Fenton noted that for the special envoy, the constitutional process is "important."

Pedersen will "therefore also continue to work to facilitate a wider process to progress the implementation of Security Council resolution 2254," which outlines a process for an end to Syria's civil war.

The UN envoy began the day by meeting the two co-chairs of the constitutional committee -- one from the opposition and one from the Syrian regime.

For the first time on Sunday, the two committee co-chairs -- Ahmad Kuzbari, the Syrian regime’s representative, and Hadi al-Bahra from the opposition side -- sat down together with Pedersen "for a substantial and frank discussion on how we are to proceed with the constitutional reform."

Syria has been embroiled in a vicious civil war since early 2011 when the Bashar al-Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with unexpected ferocity.

More than 5 million civilians have since been displaced.

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