A Syrian National Dialogue Congress was initially set for November 18. It was planned to be held in Russia's Black Sea resort of Sochi.

Turkey’s presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said Ankara was in the middle of deciding whether to accept or decline Moscow’s invitation to the event when the news came out.
Turkey’s presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said Ankara was in the middle of deciding whether to accept or decline Moscow’s invitation to the event when the news came out. (AA)

Turkey’s presidency on Sunday said Moscow’s invitation to a Syrian National Dialogue Congress, initially set for November 18, has been postponed to a later date.

Ibrahim Kalin, Turkey's presidential spokesman, said Turkey was in the middle of deciding whether to accept or decline the invitation to the congress when news came it had been postponed.

“We found out that the congress was announced as a fait accompli. We immediately objected,” he told news channel NTV. 

“Afterwards, the Kremlin contacted us and stated that they had postponed this meeting,” he added.

Moscow invited all Syrian opposition forces to attend the planned congress in the city of Sochi, Russia’s foreign minister said on Friday. 

During the last round of Syria peace talks in the Kazakh capital Astana late last month, three guarantor countries – Russia, Turkey and Iran – agreed to discuss proposals for holding a national dialogue conference.

However, the Syrian opposition’s High Negotiations Committee and the Syrian Coalition of Revolutionary and Opposition Forces both appear to have declined invitations to attend the gathering.

Syria has been locked in a vicious civil war since 2011, when Bashar al Assad's regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with unexpected ferocity.

Since then, hundreds of thousands of people have been killed in the conflict, according to UN figures.

Source: AA