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UN Roadmap for Syria, and a Truce and Negotiations at the Beginning of the Year - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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US Secretary of State John Kerry speaks to his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov before the start of the meeting on Syria in New York yesterday (AFP)

US Secretary of State John Kerry speaks to his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov before the start of the meeting on Syria in New York yesterday (AFP)

The UN Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution yesterday endorsing an international roadmap for peace in Syria which includes a ceasefire and negotiations between the regime and the opposition at the beginning of January. The resolution includes the components mentioned in the plan which was drawn up by the major powers during the last two Vienna meetings held in October and November respectively. The resolution stipulates that the Security Council “support the ceasefire on all Syrian territory” and enter the stage of implementation as soon as the authority and the opposition take “the first steps towards the political transition process”. It also expresses the Council’s “support for free and fair elections”. The roadmap also includes the formation of a coalition government within six months, elections within 18 months and sending international observers.

Coinciding with this, the supreme negotiating body for Syrian opposition forces concluded its meetings in Riyadh yesterday by determining conditions which include releasing detainees and lifting sieges on cities before any negotiations with the regime. Riad Hijab who was selected as the general coordinator for the body emphasised that the opposition is insistent on its request for a transitional government with full power. He added that the negotiating battle would run parallel to the field battle on the ground. Hijab also focussed on the fact that the negotiating period must not exceed 6 weeks.

George Sabra, a member of the supreme negotiating body, demanded that the Islamic military coalition formed in Saudi Arabia recently play a role in Syria.