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45 members of Syrian Constitutional Committee meet

November 4, 2019 at 9:42 pm

UN special envoy for Syria Geir Pedersen (R) speaks to media as the first session of Syrian Constitutional Committee ends in Geneva, Switzerland on 1 November, 2019 [Bayram Altuğ/Anadolu Agency]

The first meeting on Monday of a 45-member body, tasked with drafting a new constitution for Syria, was “turned out in a positive way”, the co-chair of the opposition group said.

“I could say it turned out in a positive way because we have decided the method of the agenda which will start following tomorrow,” said Hadi Albahra, the co-chair for the opposition group, when questioned by Anadolu Agency after a two-hour meeting.

He said the meeting discussed the method and the agenda of the group that will draft a new constitution for Syria.

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“There was consensus among all the parties involved in the committee,” said Albahra.

On Friday, UN Special Envoy for Syria Geir Pedersen, who chaired Monday’s proceedings, had said the first round of talks by the Syrian Constitutional Committee was “successful” before announcing the start of the work of the whittled-down group of 45 this week.

“The fact that 150 Syrians have been sitting together respecting each other, talking to each other…I think it was quite impressive,” Pedersen had said on Sunday.

On Sunday, Pedersen released a code of conduct agreed to by the co-chair for the opposition and co-chair for the Syrian regime.

The code of conduct also agrees that the negotiating parties “show respect and tact toward members and refrain from inflammatory speeches and personal attacks,” while respecting the dignity and integrity of the Committee.

The Constitutional Committee is mandated within the context of a UN-facilitated Geneva process to prepare and draft constitutional reforms paving the way for a political settlement in Syria.

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