Syrian Negotiation Committee demands release of all prisoners before discussing political settlement in Syria
On Tuesday, the Syrian Negotiation Committee from the Riyadh 2 Conference demanded the release of all prisoners from the Syrian government’s prisons before it can discuss the political settlement in Syria.
Ahmed Tou’ma, the head of the committee participating in the Astana 10 Talks, stated that they informed the United Nations (UN) that the Syrian government and its allies have to release all prisoners without conditions before discussing the political settlement or the return of refugees to Syria.
Tou’ma’s statements came during a press conference following the end of the tenth round of the Astana Talks in the Russian city of Sochi under the auspices of Russia, Iran, Turkey, and with the presence of Staffan De Mistura, the UN special envoy to Syria.
Tou’ma added that they attempted to achieve stability in the Idlib governorate, Northern Syria, through the Free Syrian Army’s factions and Turkey. Tou’ma noted that this round of talks discussed the situation in Idlib and the extension of the de-escalation agreement.
Tou’ma confirmed that the Syrian Constitutional Committee will start work in September. Tou’ma considered that moving to the new constitution would undermine the pillars of the authoritarian Syrian government.
Tou’ma demanded the voluntary return of Syrian refugees, amidst a secure atmosphere and international guarantees.
On Tuesday, the tenth round of the Astana Talks ended. The attendees agreed on several points, including the extension of the de-escalation agreement in Idlib and the discussion of the prisoners’ issue.