Spokesman for the High Negotiations Committee (HNC) Salem al-Meslet said that it is Assad who must “pack up” and leave Syria, in response to remarks made by head of the regime’s negotiating delegation Bashar al-Ja’afari who said that the opposition’s negotiating delegation had to “pack up” and leave.
Meslet said that the Assad regime desperately seeks to thwart negotiations by targeting civilians across Syria with full force. “Had the regime shown commitment to the truce, released detainees, and allowed the entry of humanitarian aid, there would be a case to say there had been progress in the negotiations.”
“The regime’s negotiation delegation has not shown any seriousness about reaching a solution. They have spoken about issues that are completely extraneous to the subjects of negotiations, such as the Golan Heights, which we insist it is a Syrian territory. Such issues should be raised after the nightmare in Syria has come to an end.”
Commenting on the intention of the UN envoy to assess the talks, Meslet said that “what matters to us most is a solution that is acceptable to Syrians at home, in refugee camps, in neighboring countries, and in countries where they sought asylum.”
“What concerns us is the situation at home, whether we like it or not. We are committed to the goals of the revolution and to the huge sacrifices made by our people. Whatever the UN envoy’s assessment of the negotiations may be, it will be negative because of the intransigence of the Assad regime and its unwillingness to negotiate in good faith.”
With regard to the upcoming meeting by the Syrian International Support Group (ISSG) in Vienna, Meslet expressed hope that the meeting will yield positive results.
“We expect the ISSG meeting to raise the core issues before the Geneva negotiations can be resumed, most importantly the release of detainees in Assad’s prisons, lifting the sieges, stopping the regime’s violations of the truce, and putting an end to the regime’s crimes,” Meslet added.
Meslet concluded his remarks by stressing that “we agreed to come to Geneva mainly to discuss the humanitarian issues, particularly the file of detainees in Assad’s prisons which has not seen any progress.” (Source: Anadolu Agency)