UN Syria envoy declines to say who invited for Geneva talks

United Nations says Geneva talks will begin on Friday with participation of Syrian regime and opposition groups without giving further details about identities of participants

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

U.N. mediator for Syria Staffan de Mistura gestures during a news conference at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland Jan. 25, 2016.

The United Nations has invited Syria's government and opposition to peace talks set to start in Geneva on Friday, a U.N. statement said on Tuesday, without giving any details of who had been invited, or how many groups might participate.

"The United Nations Special Envoy for Syria, Mr. Staffan de Mistura, has addressed invitations to the Syrian participants today, 26 January 2016, in accordance with the parameters outlined in Security Council resolution 2254 (2015)," the statement said.

"The intra-Syrian talks will start as of 29 January 2016 in Geneva," the statement added.

More than 260,000 people have been killed in Syria since the civil war started in 2011 between the Assad regime and opposition forces following the "Arab Spring" movement that swept a number of countries in the Middle-East and North Africa.

In addition, 6.7 million are displaced internally while at least 5 million have fled the country to the neighbouring countries of Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt and Jordan.

TRTWorld, Reuters