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UN to attend Syria talks in Sochi

Antonio Guterres

United Nations, Jan 28 (UITV/IANS) - UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has decided to send a representative to attend the Russian-brokered intra-Syria talks in Sochi.

Guterres has designated Staffan de Mistura, UN special envoy for Syria, to participate in the Congress of the Syrian National Dialogue scheduled for Monday and Tuesday in the Black Sea resort of Sochi, Xinhua quoted Stephane Dujarric, the spokesman, as saying on Saturday.

Guterres made the decision after being briefed by de Mistura and taking into account the statement by Russia that the outcome of the Sochi talks should be brought to Geneva as a contribution to the intra-Syrian talks process under the auspices of the United Nations, said the statement released in Addis Ababa.

"The Secretary-General is confident that the congress in Sochi will be an important contribution to a revived intra-Syrian talks process under the auspices of the UN in Geneva," said Dujarric.

De Mistura has just concluded a special round of intra-Syria talks within the framework of the Geneva process. The talks were held in Vienna, Austria, for logistic reasons. De Mistura on Friday called for political will for the peaceful resolution of the Syria crisis.

Guterres is in Addis Ababa for an African Union summit.