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Syrian government & opposition finally form constitutional committee, seen as cornerstone of peaceful resolution to 9yo war

Syrian government & opposition finally form constitutional committee, seen as cornerstone of peaceful resolution to 9yo war
A committee that will write a new constitution for Syria, a key part of the political transition in a war-torn country, has finally been formed with the United Nations’ backing, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres announced.

The body will convene within weeks for the first time, Guterres told reporters on the sidelines of a UN climate summit in New York. He thanked Russia, Iran, and Turkey, the three countries that have been pushing for years to see the creation of the committee as part of the so-called Astana process.

Geir Pedersen, the UN’s Special Envoy for Syria, said the breakthrough came on Monday following meetings with Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem and Naser al-Hariri, who represents the opposition’s Syrian Negotiations Committee.

The constitutional committee is expected to agree on Syria’s new basic law, which will hopefully secure its future as a nation respecting the religious, political, and ethnic differences of the many groups living there.

The 150-seat body will have equal representation from the Syrian government, the opposition, and civil groups. It will be based in Geneva under UN auspices.

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