Guarantor states meeting kicks off in Astana

TEHRAN, Mar. 16 (MNA) – The trilateral meeting between the foreign ministers of Iran, Russia, and Turkey, as the three guarantor states of peace in Syria, kicked off in Astana on Friday morning.

“Holding 8 rounds of meetings of Syrian peace process in Astana in the last year with senior representatives from the three guarantor states and the involved sides in Syria, is an important accomplishment for reliving tensions in Syria,” said Kairat Abdrakhmanov, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan on Friday morning.

The Kazakh top diplomat made the remarks at the opening of the trilateral meeting of the foreign ministers of Iran, Russia, and Turkey in Astana hosted by the government of Kazakhstan.

The meeting is timed to coincide with the first anniversary of the Astana format for a peace settlement in Syria.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, Sergey Viktorovich Lavrov the Foreign Minister of Russia, and the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkey Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu discuss the outcomes and achievements of eight rounds of the Astana peace talks on Syria.

Prior to ministerial meeting of Friday, at a preliminary meeting, in the Kazak capital city of Astana, of the three guarantors of ceasefire in Syria, Iran’s Hossein Jaberi Ansari, the top aide to Iranian Foreign Minister in special political affairs, joined Alexander Lavrentiev, the Russian President Vladimir Putin’s special envoy for Syrian Affairs, and Sedat Onal, the Turkish Foreign Ministry Deputy Undersecretary, on Thursday.

At that meeting, the three officials reviewed the arrangements and schedule for the trilateral meeting between the foreign ministers of their respected countries expected to take place on Friday.

Earlier on Thursday, Jaberi Ansari held a bilateral meeting with Lavrentiev, during which the two sides talked about the outcome of the Syrian National Dialogue Congress held in Sochi and arrangements for the creation of a committee for constitutional reform in Syria.

They also exchanged views on the agenda of the first meeting of the working group on the release of detainees/abductees and handover of the bodies as well as the identification of missing persons in the Syria conflict.

Russian foreign ministry issued a statement on Thursday on the ministerial meeting of Astana saying that the meeting will map out new steps that could be taken to reduce violence in Syria, ease the humanitarian situation, and create favorable conditions for a political process that the Syrians themselves will promote and implement to achieve a stable settlement based on UN Security Council Resolution 2254, taking into account decisions made in Sochi.

YNG/ IRN 82863888

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