Syrian Peace talks to be held soon: UN

After days of holding back, finally on Friday the peace talks with Syria will be held by the United Nations, sources said.

“All I can say about the talks is that they will start as planned … I don’t have a time. I don’t have the exact locations,” spokesman Ahmad Fawzi told journalists.

The Foreign Minister of Syria, Wallid Moalem, may not be able to attend the talk which is to be held in Geneva. But the High Negotiation Committee which said earlier that the delegates may attend the dialogue “hopefully later” has also warned of avoiding the talks if Bashar al-Asad, the president of Syria doesn’t stop bombarding the citizens in the country.

The talks have been delayed on accounts of who is to represent the opposition during the peace discussions which were scheduled to happen on Monday.

UN Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura is supposedly to be the negotiator between the two parties which will be held in different rooms with de Mistura shuffling between them.

In an earlier video message sent out by de Mistura, he emphasised on the significance of the peace talks which had been delayed for the past two years.

“We need to hear your voice to everyone who is coming to this conference … saying this conference must be an opportunity not to be missed,” de Mistura said.

The earlier supposedly planned talks were constantly interrupted by the strong opposition to the Assad Regime as well as by the ISIS and other moderated groups supported by the United States.

Source: CNN

United Nations pushes for a political and military solution for Iraq

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Baghdad : The United Nations Secretary- General Ban Ki-Moon’s Special Representative in Iraq and the head of the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) Nickolay Mladenov said that the advance of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in Iraq has been “stalled” but that the Iraqi government needs strong political and military action to thwart the militant organization.

In his video conversation with journalists, he said that, “For anyone to attempt to take over Baghdad would be extremely difficult.” However, he also added that a purely military solution is not possible. He stressed on the importance of finding a social, political solution in addition to the military solutions that are being evaluated presently.

He stressed on the importance of an Iraqi led offensive so as to ensure a sense of consensus amongst the various sections of the Iraqi people for a military and social solution to this crisis. Over 900 civilians have been killed in the fighting since June 5, when ISIS and its allies began their assault. The UNAMI and the UNHRC have said that updated figures put the number of civilian deaths at 757 in Nineveh, Salah al-Din and Diyala and the overall number of deaths at 1,300 and over 1200 injured.