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Syrian opposition leader: Peace talks will fail

Osama Abu Zeid, legal adviser to the Free Syrian Army [Reuters]
Osama Abu Zeid, legal adviser to the Free Syrian Army [Reuters]

A member of the Syrian opposition group said he expects the second round of talks in Astana to fail amid differences between Turkey and Russia.

Osama Abu Zeid, legal adviser to the Free Syrian Army and a member of the opposition delegation to the talks which are due to begin on Thursday, said: “Until now, I think the Astana 2 will not result in anything, but on the contrary it may result in negative outcomes.”

Read: UN and others play down expectations for Geneva talks on Syria

“If the Russians do not give real concessions for the benefit of the Syrian people, it would mark the collapse of the Ankara Agreement, signed on December 30,” he said in an interview with Al Jazeera, adding that “the Russians are trying to make gains without making concessions.”

Abu Zeid said only a small delegation came to Astana to represent the opposition to show that they are serious about moving forward and finding a solution for all Syrians.

He added that talks must begin with a ceasefire and improvement in the humanitarian situation on the ground, adding that “this is something that the Russians had not done so far”.

“On the contrary, Moscow still supports the regime’s crimes and its allies,” he said.

Al Jazeera reported that Turkey and Russia there is disagreement between Turkey and Russia on the agenda of the talks and their priorities.

Read: Syrian opposition says ready for Geneva talks, but Assad must go

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