UPDATES FOR CORRESPONDENTS
28 December - Joint statement by the UN in Syria, the Syrian Arab Red Crescent and the International Committee of the Red Cross
26 December - Statement attributable to the Spokesperson for the Special Envoy for Syria
11 December - International Syria Support Group meeting
24 November: Statement attributable to the spokesperson of the United Nations Special Envoy for Syria
14 November - Statement of the International Syria Support Group
6 November - Statement attributable to the Spokesperson of the Special Envoy for Syria
30 October - Vienna Communique on Syria
2 October - Statement Attributable to the Spokesperson of the Special Envoy for Syria, Mr. Staffan de Mistura
22 September - Statement attributable to the Spokesperson of the Special Envoy for Syria
Meeting in Vienna, on October 30, 2015, China, Egypt, the EU, France, Germany, Iran, Iraq, Italy, Jordan, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, the United Nations, and the United States [“the participants”] came together to discuss the grave situation in Syria and how to bring about an end to the violence as soon as possible.
The participants had a frank and constructive discussion, covering major issues. While substantial differences remain among the participants, they reached a mutual understanding on the following:
1) Syria’s unity, independence, territorial integrity, and secular character are fundamental.
2) State institutions will remain intact.
3) The rights of all Syrians, regardless of ethnicity or religious denomination, must be protected.
4) It is imperative to accelerate all diplomatic efforts to end the war.
5) Humanitarian access will be ensured throughout the territory of Syria, and the participants will increase support for internally displaced persons, refugees, and their host countries.
6) Da'esh, and other terrorist groups, as designated by the U.N. Security Council, and further, as agreed by the participants, must be defeated.
7) Pursuant to the 2012 Geneva Communique and U.N. Security Council Resolution 2118, the participants invited the U.N. to convene representatives of the Government of Syria and the Syrian opposition for a political process leading to credible, inclusive, non-sectarian governance, followed by a new constitution and elections. These elections must be administered under U.N. supervision to the satisfaction of the governance and to the highest international standards of transparency and accountability, free and fair, with all Syrians, including the diaspora, eligible to participate.
8) This political process will be Syrian led and Syrian owned, and the Syrian people will decide the future of Syria.
9) The participants together with the United Nations will explore modalities for, and implementation of, a nationwide ceasefire to be initiated on a date certain and in parallel with this renewed political process.
The participants will spend the coming days working to narrow remaining areas of disagreement, and build on areas of agreement. Ministers will reconvene within two weeks to continue these discussions.
As part of the implementation of the initiative set out by Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura before the Security Council on 29 July 2015 and endorsed by the Council in its Presidential Statement of 17 August 2015 (S/PRST/2015/15), the Special Envoy and his Deputy Ramzy Ezzeldin Ramzy met over the last two days with the following facilitators appointed by the Secretary-General to head the intra-Syrian thematic working groups, under the direction of the Special Envoy:
Mr. Jan Egeland as facilitator for the Safety and Protection thematic Working Group; Mr. Nicolas Michel as facilitator for the Political and Legal Issues thematic Working Group; Mr. Volker Perthes as facilitator for the Military, Security and Counterterrorism thematic Working Group; and Ms. Birgitta Holst Alani as facilitator for the Continuity of Public Services, Reconstruction and Development thematic Working Group.
They discussed draft agendas with a view to ensuring coordination and parallel progress of the Working Groups.
Mr. de Mistura has just returned from consultations with Syrian interlocutors most recently in Damascus and Istanbul. These visits complement ongoing OSE outreach to regional capitals and elsewhere. The Special Envoy is now heading to NY to carry these discussions forward in the margins of the General Assembly.
“The Working Groups are intended to provide Syrians with a platform to address in-depth themes that are certainly not new, but have lacked to date sustained intra-Syrian discussion. It is hoped that their outcomes could eventually set the stage for a Syrian agreement to end the conflict on the basis of the Geneva Communique,” Mr. de Mistura said.
While the participation of Syrians is central for this process to move forward, the Security Council has also “emphasised the need for robust international and regional assistance” in support of the efforts of the Special Envoy.
Mr. de Mistura will continue consultations with relevant actors to accelerate such support. “This is the defining humanitarian challenge of our times,” he reiterated. “The Syrians deserve that we move faster towards a political solution”.
13 September - Statement of the Special Envoy for Syria to the Ministerial meeting of the League of Arab States
10 September - Statement attributable to the Spokesperson for the United Nations Special Envoy for Syria
1st September - Special Envoy for Syria met with the Deputy Foreign Minister of Arab African Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran
17 August - Special Envoy for Syria condemned yesterday's air raids on the town of Duma
14 August - Special Envoy for Syria condemns shelling of Damascus Suburbs
12 August - Special Envoy for Syria welcomes the release of human rights activist and journalist
5 August - Secretary-General encouraged by Security Council’s support for latest proposal on Syria
5 August - Special Envoy explains his proposal on thematic discussions
29 July - Remarks by the Secretary-General to the Security Council on the situation in Syria
29 July - Special Envoy for Syria briefs Security Council on the situation in Syria
UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura visited Damascus today, with the main purpose of discussing with Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Mr Walid Mouallem and Deputy Foreign Minister Mr Faisal Mekdad the preliminary findings of the Geneva Consultations and the preparations for the Security Council debate on Syria on 29 July in New York. The meeting was focused on how to maintain a momentum on the search for a political solution to the long-lasting Syrian conflict.
The Special Envoy, having concluded his regional tour, is now planning to return to New York for briefing the Secretary-General and, based on this, prepare for a discussion at the Security Council on the Syrian conflict.
زار المبعوث الخاص إلى سوريا ستيفان دي مستورا دمشق اليوم والتقى نائب رئيس مجلس الوزراء ووزير الخارجية السيد وليد المعلم ونائب وزير الخارجية السيد فيصل مقداد لمناقشة النتائج الأولية لمشاورات جنيف بشكل رئيسي والتحضير لمناقشات مجلس الأمن حول سوريا في 29 تموز في نيويورك. وركز الاجتماع على كيفية الحفاظ على الزخم في البحث عن حل سياسي للصراع القائم منذ فترة طويلة في سوريا.
بعد أن اختتم جولته الإقليمية، يعتزم المبعوث الخاص على العودة إلى نيويورك لإطلاع الأمين العام، والتحضير للمناقشة في مجلس الأمن بشأن الصراع السوري بناءا على نتائج جولته.
The UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura expressed deep concern over the situation of the civilian population in the town of Zabadani. Media sources and contacts inside Zabadani have reported heavy bombardment, including by barrel bombs, since Syrian Government forces backed by pro-government militias started a military campaign against opposition fighters located in Zabadani . Reliable local sources have in fact confirmed that a large number of barrel bombs have been dropped on the city causing unprecedented levels of destruction and many deaths among the civilian population.
Armed opposition forces known as the “Army of Conquest” have retaliated by firing
rockets and heavy mortar shells on two villages near Idlib, Al Foua and Kefraya, where a substantial number of civilians are trapped.
In both cases, civilians are tragically caught in the middle of the fighting.
The Special Envoy calls on all parties to uphold the principle of the protection of civilians and once again on the Syrian government to halt the use of crude and indiscriminate weapons such as the barrel bombs on its own cities.
21 July 2015, Geneva
Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura visited Teheran today where he met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Mohammad Javad Zarif, and the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs for Arab-African Affairs, Mr. Hussein Amir Abdollahian.
During his meetings Mr. de Mistura underscored the urgency of a Syrian-led political solution to the conflict and exchanged views on how to proceed with a political process, with the support of the Security Council. The Special Envoy took good note of Minister Zarif’s and Deputy Minister Abdollahian’s analysis of the current situation in the region, and its impact on the conflict in Syria. He underscored the absence of a military solution to this conflict and recalled the imperative for all its parties to uphold the principle of the protection of civilians.
Mr. de Mistura’s consultations are part of a rolling process to seek views of all Syrian and relevant regional and international parties on the operationalization of the Geneva Communiqué. In this context, Mr. de Mistura continues to meet separately with regional stakeholders and members of the Security Council. The Special Envoy is working to finalize his proposals to the Secretary-General on a way forward to support Syrian parties in their search of a political solution to the conflict, in preparation for a briefing to the Security Council.
21 July 2015, Geneva
26 & 27 June
25 & 26 June
FIVE WEEKS INTO THE GENEVA CONSULTATIONS
زار المبعوث الخاص إلى سوريا ستيفان دي مستورا طهران اليوم حيث التقى مع وزير الشؤون الخارجية، السيد محمد جواد ظريف، ونائب وزير الشؤون الخارجية للشؤون الافريقية العربية، والسيد حسين أمير عبد اللهيان.
وشدد السيد دي مستورا خلال لقاءاته على الحاجة الملحة لإيجاد حل سياسي للصراع بقيادة سورية وتبادل وجهات النظر حول كيفية المضي قدما في العملية السياسية، بدعم من مجلس الأمن. كما أخذ المبعوث الخاص علماً وثيقاً بوجهات نظر الوزير ظريف ونائب الوزير عبد اللهيان في ما يخصّ الوضع الحالي في المنطقة، وتأثيره على الصراع في سوريا. وشدد على عدم وجود حل عسكري لهذا الصراع، وأشار إلى ضرورة تمسّك جميع الأطراف بمبدأ حماية المدنيين.
تشكّل مشاورات السيد دي مستورا جزءاً من عملية متواصلة للحصول على آراء جميع الأطراف السورية الإقليمية والدولية ذات الصلة من أجل تفعيل بيان جنيف. في هذا السياق، يواصل السيد دي مستورا الاجتماع بشكل منفصل مع الجهات المعنية السوريّة والإقليمية والدوليّة، كما مع أعضاء مجلس الأمن. ويعمل المبعوث الخاص على وضع اللمسات الأخيرة على المقترحات التي سيقدّمها إلى الأمين العام حول كيفيّة دعم الأطراف السورية في بحثهم عن حل سياسي للنزاع، وذلك استعدادا لإحاطة مجلس الأمن.
21 يوليو 2015، جنيف
Special Envoy de Mistura is continuing meetings with a broad spectrum of Syrian, regional and international interlocutors within the framework of the Geneva Consultations. Since 5 May 2015, Mr. de Mistura and Deputy Special Envoy Ramzy have met so far with representatives of the Syrian Government, the Syrian opposition Coalition and 39 Syrian political and civil society groups. They have also held 26 meetings with representatives of concerned Member States from the Security Council and the region, as well as regional organizations. This process is expected to continue into July 2015.
Mr. de Mistura reiterates his sincere hope and belief that guns will fall silent one day. It is inevitable, as has been seen in other conflicts. The sooner they fall silent, the more lives will be saved. It is the responsibility of all Syrian, regional and international actors to try to bring that day forward and to make every effort to protect civilians under any circumstances and at all times. This is particularly relevant to the unacceptable use of barrel bombs. Mr. de Mistura stresses that there is a general consensus that there cannot be a military solution to the Syrian tragedy. The use of force will only create further suffering, destruction and grievances. An inclusive and Syrian-led and owned political solution is urgently needed. Only such a solution can address the aspirations of the Syrian people and end the conflict in a sustainable manner.
The Geneva Consultations remain a rolling process of separate and informal meetings aimed at operationalizing the Geneva Communique of 30 June 2012. In the coming weeks, the Special Envoy intends to brief the Secretary-General on his findings from this process. Special Envoy de Mistura hopes to be in a position to present to the Secretary-General views on ways to help the Syrian parties reach a political solution, as per the Geneva Communique, to end the unacceptable bloodletting in their country, which has led to countless deaths and injuries, and destruction of cities, towns and villages.
Within the framework of the ongoing Geneva Consultations, Deputy Special Envoy Ramzy Ezzeldine Ramzy met today in Geneva with representatives of the Union of Syriac Women and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), who briefed on the situation in Syria. They discussed ways to support people in Syria in their daily humanitarian needs. Mr. Ramzy also discussed with the representatives of the Union of Syriac Women perspectives on a political solution to the Syrian conflict which could meet the needs of diverse components, which make up integral parts of the Syrian society.
At the end of today's meetings, Mr. Ramzy stressed that, "all should put their differences aside to ensure that aid reaches all those in need, but ultimately only a political solution would allow to address the deepening humanitarian crisis in a sustainable manner." While highlighting the urgent need for a political solution to the Syrian conflict, he added that, "it is critical that women organizations are included in any political process, fully participate in it and contribute to it".4 June
In the framework of the Geneva Consultations, the United Nations Special Envoy for Syria, Mr. Staffan de Mistura, met today with Patriarch Ignatius Aphrem II, Patriarch of Antioch and All the East and Supreme Head of the Universal Syrian Orthodox Church, who presented his views about the peaceful future of Syria and its various communities.
“It is very important that the voices of the religious leaders and their communities be heard and taken into account as we search for peace in Syria. Their representatives have an essential to role play in promoting peacemaking and reconciliation in the Syria of tomorrow", Mr de Mistura said after the meeting.1 June
On 29 May, he met with a delegation of civil society organizations from the United States working on the Syrian crisis. He said afterward that listening to civil society organizations — especially those who work on advocacy and the medical doctors who put their lives at risk every day to save the victims of chemical attacks or shelling — was yet another reminder of the daily realities of the Syrian civilians who pay the highest toll of this conflict. He said it was also an opportunity to reflect on the aspirations of the diaspora. The Special Envoy also met with delegations of European countries, namely Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland.