Russia, Turkey and Iran agree to begin forming Syrian constitutional committee in early 2019
Turkey - SMART
On Tuesday, Russia, Turkey and Iran agreed to make efforts to start the work of the Syrian Constitutional Committee in early 2019.
In a statement delivered by the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov after a meeting with the United Nations Special Envoy to Syria Staffan de Mistura in Geneva, the three countries said that they informed de Mistura of positive results after consultations with the Syrian parties regarding the formatino of the constitutional committee, according to Russian media.
The statement stressed the three countries' intention to contribute to the formation of the constitutional committee, including the formulation of general administrative principles in coordination with the Syrian parties and the UN special envoy to Syria. The three countries will also define procedural rules to ensure that the committee's work is effective and consistent, according to the statement.
The statement added that the work of the constitutional committee must be based on a sense of consensus and constructive participation from its members, so the Syrian people may support the results of its work.
The Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that they have reached an important stage in the efforts to form the constitutional committee. Cavusoglu denied any disagreement regarding the list of representatives to the committee proposed by the Syrian government and the opposition, according to the Turkish news agency Anadolu.
Jawish Oglu added that there may be different views on the civil society list, and that they work together as guarantors, and with the UN.
Jawish Oglu said that today's meeting is an indication of the importance of the Astana and Sochi stages for the political solution in Syria on one hand and the achievement of tangible results on the other.
On Tuesday, the official spokesman of the High Negotiations Committee (HNC), Yehia al-Aridi, said that if the representatives of Syrian civil society organizations to the constitutional committee are unsuitable, the HNC will object.
De Mistura was put under American and European pressure to elect the 50 UN representatives, but the Syrian government continued to reject any UN involvement in the committee.