MOSCOW, April 4 (RIA Novosti)
- Russia Deplores 'Egging On' of Syrian Opposition
- Egypt Invites Syrian Opposition to Unite in Cairo
- Russia Urges Syria to ‘Make First Step,’ Call Off Troops
- Moscow Criticizes Call to Arm Syrian Opposition
Envoys of Syria's opposition will visit Moscow for talks on April 17-18, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday.
"On April 17-18 contacts with Syrian opposition envoys will be held in Moscow,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said on its official Twitter page.
The visit was announced earlier in the day by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who did not specify its exact date.
The Russian Foreign Ministry also said Lavrov will meet with his Syrian counterpart Walid al-Mualem on April 10.
According to Western media reports, members of the UN Security Council have started discussions on a draft resolution demanding the Syrian government end hostilities by the previously agreed deadline of April 10. The opposition must join the ceasefire within the following 48 hours. The draft resolution also demands the Syrian leadership to comply “immediately” with all provisions of a plan by UN and Arab League special envoy Kofi Annan.
Annan has proposed a six-point plan that includes implementing UN-supervised ceasefire, ensuring nationwide access to humanitarian aid in Syria, releasing political prisoners, upholding freedoms of movement and association and advancing political process in the country. The plan was backed by Damascus.
The UN Security Council declared its unanimous support for the plan on March 21.
Over 9,000 have died in the year-long conflict between Bashar al-Assad’s government and the political opposition, according to latest UN estimates. Western powers have called on al-Assad to step down, but the demand was not included in Annan’s plan, which was supported by Moscow.
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