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Syria rejects Qatari, Saudi role in Astana talks

Syria's Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Meqdad

The participation of Saudi Arabia and Qatar in Syria talks will be discussed once they stop backing militancy, Syria’s deputy foreign minister was quoted as saying on Wednesday, appearing to reject their attendance at forthcoming peace talks.

“Once Qatar and Saudi Arabia halt their support for terrorism we will discuss the matter of their participation in the talks,” Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Meqdad was quoted as saying by the Lebanon-based TV station Al-Mayadeen.

Kazakhstan is due to host Syria peace talks next week called for by Russia, Iran and Turkey. Russia and Iran are Assad’s two main allies. Turkey has backed the rebellion against Assad, as have Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

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