Germany’s Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier says a new round of talks aimed at resolving the Syrian crisis is to set to be held in the Austrian capital of Vienna in less than a week.
He made the announcement at a conference in Hamburg on Friday, saying the statement issued at the end of the previous round of the talks on Syria in Vienna will be the basis for the November 12 meeting, IRNA reported.
The previous negotiations were held on October 30, gathering top diplomats from 17 countries, including Iran, as well as envoys from the United Nations (UN) and the European Union (UN).
The participants agreed on respect for Syria’s unity and sovereignty as well as the eradication of extremist groups operating in the Arab country, stressing that the political process to end the bloodshed there “will be Syrian led and Syrian owned.”
The top German diplomat added that the goals outlined in the final statement appeared to be idealistic to some extent under the current circumstances; however, the document forms a roadmap for cooperation among all concerned parties.
Steinmeier further welcomed the involvement of Iran and Saudi Arabia in the diplomatic efforts to end the violence that has reportedly claimed over 250,000 lives in Syria since 2011, calling for negotiations with the representatives of the Syrian government.
Participants at the previous round of talks remained at loggerheads over the role to be played by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the country’s political process.
While certain Western and non-Western countries insist that Assad cannot be part of any future government in Syria, Iran and Russia say only Syrian people are to decide about such internal Syrian issues.