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Astana Talks Resume Today As Guarantor States Try to Overcome Differences | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan meets with Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu in Istanbul on Sunday © AP Photo/ Presidency Press Service, Pool

Moscow, Ankara – The fifth round of talks on Syria will kick off on Tuesday in the Kazakh capital in the presence of the guarantor states, including Russia, Turkey and Iran, and with the participation of representatives from the Syrian government and the opposition factions.

While the meetings aim at finalizing an agreement over the de-escalation zones inside Syria and the monitoring mechanisms, sources close to the matter said that the fifth round would be highly important, noting a serious determination by the participants to overcome pending differences.

Meanwhile, delegations from Russia and Turkey held a technical meeting on Monday in Astana ahead of the resumption of talks.

Turkish diplomatic sources said that the two delegations have met in a hotel in the Kazakh capital, followed by a meeting between the Turkish and Iranian delegations.

Sources quoted by Anadolu agency said that the guarantor states, including Turkey, Russia, and Iran, would hold a tripartite meeting on Tuesday in preparation for the official two-day gathering.

On a different note, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan met Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu in Istanbul on Sunday.

Erdogan’s spokesman said on Monday that the talks have touched on main issues of the agenda of the third meeting [on Syria] which will be held in Astana.

“The most important topics are the creation of de-escalation zones and the delineation of a road map of the Syrian settlement,” Ibrahim Kalin said.

“We will make great efforts to finish this process as soon as possible and ensure the delivery of humanitarian aid,” he added.