Washington Seeking to Blame Damascus for Failure of Geneva Talks
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Syrian Ambassador to the UN Bashar al-Jafari said the US is not serious about the success of Geneva 2 talks, adding that Washington is seeking to blame the conference failure on Damascus.
Speaking in New York on Wednesday he said Washington had intended to put the blame on the Syrian government’s delegation for failure of the talks in Geneva and then (use it as a pretext to) turn to the military option.
Negotiations intended to end Syria’s civil war began with a week-long session in Geneva last month and have resumed this week in the Swiss city which hosts the UN’s European headquarters.
There had been hopes for Tuesday’s talks after they began with a minute’s silence for the people killed since the conflict began.
But Lakhdar Brahimi, the UN-Arab League envoy, said the second round of "Geneva 2" so far was as "laborious" as the first. "We are not making much progress," he said.
Al-Jafari further said the United States’ plot to turn power over to Syria’s foreign-backed opposition has been met with failure due to the Syrian army’s victories on the ground, divisions among the opposition groups and efforts by the Syrian government’s delegation in the talks.
He further said that Brahimi, the Americans and the Russians have realized that the opposition delegation in Geneva 2 negotiations is weak as more than 100 armed groups operating in Syria do not consider the so-called coalition to be their representative.
Elsewhere, Al-Jafari referred to the presence of foreign militants in Syria, saying that 14000 Chechnya’s, 12000 Saudi nationals and 4000 Libyans, among others, have entered the country to fight against the government.
A high-ranking US official on Wednesday said 75,000 to 115,000 militants, organized in 1500 groups, are fighting the Syrian government.
James Clapper, director of the US National Intelligence, added that these militants are from 50 countries and that many of them belong to al-Qaeda terrorist group.
Syria has been the scene of deadly unrest since March 2011. According to figures released by the United Nations, more than 100,000 people have so far been killed and millions displaced due to the violence.