Syria’s government ready to work with new UN envoy, says Russian diplomat

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UNITED NATIONS, November 2. /TASS/. Syria’s government is ready to work with the United Nations Secretary General’s new special envoy, Geir Pedersen, Russian Permanent Representative to the United Nations Vasily Nebenzya said on Friday.

“I never met him before, I don’t know him personally yet and I am sure I will soon know. But we gave our concern to his appointment,” he said. “The most important thing is that the Syrian government is ready to work with him and that he will be impartial, objective, diplomatic and creative in trying to move all the peace process.”

He said he thinks the new UN envoy should rely on what has been achieved by his predecessor, Staffan de MIstura, who is leaving his post in late November after more than four years of work.

The Russian diplomat did not rule out that de Mistura will finally manage to finish the formation of a constitutional committee in Syria before he leaves his office. At the same time, Nebenzya called to refrain from setting artificial timeframes for these efforts as the main condition is to ensure that all the parties agree on the list of committee members.

Geir Pedersen of Norway was appointed United Nations Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Syria on October 31. Pedersen, born in Oslo in 1955, served as Norway’s representative to the Palestinian Authority in 1998-2003. He also worked as Personal Representative of the UN Secretary General for Southern Lebanon and Director of the Asia and Pacific Division in the UN Department of Political Affairs.

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