Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks during talks with UN Special Envoy for Syria Geir Pedersen, Moscow, July 5, 2019
Mr Special Envoy,
We are delighted to welcome you to Moscow once again. These meetings are quite timely and useful, with due consideration for the developments on the ground in Syria. We value these good contacts that have been established between our representatives and the UN, and we are noting the regular and trust-based nature of our dialogue.
For example, we cooperate effectively in the Astana format where the UN has observer status. Thanks to efforts, including those resulting from the Syrian National Dialogue Congress’ work in Sochi, it has become possible to achieve substantial results in combating terrorism in Syria, resolving humanitarian problems and making headway along the political track under UN Security Council Resolution 2254. As countries guaranteeing agreements reached between the Government and the opposition under the Astana process, Russia, Turkey and Iran will continue their efforts to achieve further results in the interests of establishing solid and reliable peace in Syria. A meeting of these countries’ representatives at the level of political directors is scheduled to take place in the near future, and the possibility of holding another Astana format meeting is being discussed.
I would like to express our extremely positive attitude towards your personal efforts to establish communications channels with the Syrian Government and various opposition forces. This completely meets criteria stipulated by UN Security Council Resolution 2254 which notes the need to launch a genuine political process that would be conducted by the Syrians themselves with UN support. We are convinced that the final establishment of the Constitutional Committee will become a decisive step towards launching this process. I believe that the committee can start operating already in the near future.
Indeed, we have a very packed agenda. I hope that we will discuss all these matters and probably others as well that are of interest to you.